USDA Accepting Applications for Local Food Promotion Program & Farmers Market Promotion Program

USDA is now accepting applications for the Local Food Promotion and Farmers Market Promotion program, with eligible applicants able to receive up to $500,000 in grant funding for certain projects. Grant applications are due May 26, 2020 with funding available beginning September 30, 2020.

The purpose of the Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP) and The Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) is to increase access and availability to locally and regionally produced agriculture products. The programs do have unique differences, requirements, and funding levels, as described below.

Local Food Promotion Program

The Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP) fulfills its purpose through supporting development, coordination and expansion of local and regional food business enterprises that are intermediaries in indirect producer to consumer marketing such as food hubs, food aggregators, food processors, value-added producers or mid-tier value chain enterprises.

LFPP offers planning and implementation projects.

Planning projects are used in the planning stages of developing, coordinating, or expanding a food business that supports locally and regionally produced agricultural products and food system infrastructure.

Project activities can include, but are not limited to:

  • Completing a feasibility study for a new intermediary food channel (i.e., food hub), to analyze market potential, capacity, and potential competitors and partners in the region.
  • Hiring experts for technical assistance to implement a local/regional food transportation system.
  • Hiring experts for training on managing a local/regional food storage or processing facility.
  • Devising a business development plan associated with the processing/marketing of local/regional agricultural products, including value-added agricultural products.

Implementation projects are used to establish a new food business or to improve or expand an existing food business that supports locally and regionally produced agricultural products and food system infrastructure.

Project activities can include, but are not limited to:

  • Developing or expanding food incubator programs or mid-tier value chains.
  • Instituting group-based Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) certification for sellers of food into institutional or wholesale marketing channels, including providing financial support for making changes and upgrades to practices and equipment to improve food safety.
  • Cultivating new wholesale market channels through an online portal or virtual marketplace.
  • Investigating and implementing more cost-effective means of transportation for food supply chains through backhaul, route optimization, and/or other operational efficiencies.

Funding Levels: Planning project grant awards range from $25,000 to $100,000. Implementation grant awards range from $100,000 to $500,000. Approximately $13.5 million will be available to fund applications.

Match: LFPP requires a 25% cost-share match.

Eligible Applicants Include:

  • Agricultural businesses
  • Agricultural cooperatives
  • CSA networks
  • CSA associations
  • Economic development corporations
  • Food Councils
  • Local governments
  • Nonprofit corporations
  • Producer networks
  • Producer associations
  • Public benefit corporation
  • Regional farmers’ market authorities
  • Tribal governments

The LFFP full Request for Applications can be found here.

Farmers Market Promotion Program

The Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) supports the development, coordination and expansion of direct producer to consumer markets such as domestic farmers markets, roadside stands, community-supported agriculture programs (CSA) and agritourism activities.

FMPP offers capacity building and community development training & technical assistance projects.

Capacity building (CB) projects are intended to build long-term organizational capacity in the development, improvement, and expansion of domestic farmers markets, roadside stands, CSA programs, agritourism activities, or other direct producer-to-consumer (including direct producer-to-retail, direct producer-to-restaurant and direct producer-to-institutional marketing) market opportunities. CB projects should demonstrate a direct benefit to farm and ranch operations serving local markets (including new and beginning farmers) and maximize the involvement of farmers and ranchers and community organizations.

CB projects can include, but are not limited to:

  • Local farmer, rancher, or market manager training and education.
  • Farmers market, roadside stand, CSA, or agritourism activity startup and/or expansion.
  • Market analysis and planning for a direct producer-to-consumer market opportunity.
  • Recruitment and outreach to new and beginning farmers and ranchers, as well as to consumers in support of direct producer-to-consumer markets.

Community Development, Training and Technical Assistance (CTA) Projects are intended to provide outreach, training, and technical assistance to farm and ranch operations serving local markets and other interested parties for developing, improving, and expanding domestic farmers markets, roadside stands, CSA programs, agritourism activities, or other direct producer-to-consumer (including direct producer-to-retail, direct producer-to-restaurant and direct producer-to-institutional marketing) market opportunities. CTA projects should engage a diverse set of local and regional foods stakeholders, including farmers and ranchers, to illustrate a substantive effect on the local and regional food system and stakeholders. CTA projects can include, but are not limited to:

  • Conducting statewide or regional farmer, rancher, or manager (i.e., farmers market manager) training and education in developing or maintaining their own direct producer-to-consumer enterprise.
  • Assisting farmers and ranchers in advertising and promoting their locally and regionally produced agricultural products through training and technical assistance.
  • Establishing or expanding producer-to-consumer networks and organizations on a state, regional, and national level, which includes efforts to develop sourcing channels using direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities with corporate, non-profit, and public institutions.
  • Providing technical support for small- and mid-sized producers to become compliant with local, state, Federal, and/or industry specifications and standards in order to increase their direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities.

Eligible Applicants Include:

  • Agricultural businesses
  • Agricultural cooperatives
  • CSA networks
  • CSA associations
  • Economic development corporations
  • Food Councils
  • Local governments
  • Nonprofit corporations
  • Producer networks
  • Producer associations
  • Public benefit corporation
  • Regional farmers’ market authorities
  • Tribal governments

Funding Levels: CB projects grant awards range from $50,000 to $250,000. CTA grant awards range from $100,000 to $500,000. Approximately $13.5 million will be available to fund applications.

Match:  FMPP require a 25% cost-share match.

 The FMPP full Request for Applications can be found here.

For more information on these grants or how to apply with Morrison's assistance, please contact the Morrison Grants Team by email at grants@morrisonco.net or call us at 530-893-4764.

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