WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced $23 million in competitive grant funding to support the development and expansion of local and regional food markets, enterprises and producer-to-consumer marketing.
The Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program (FMLFPP), authorized by the 2018 Farm Bill under the Local Agriculture Marketing Program (LAMP), covers both the Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) and Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP). Applications for both FMPP and LFPP must be submitted electronically through www.grants.gov by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on June 18, 2019.
FMPP funds projects that develop, coordinate and expand direct producer-to-consumer markets to help increase access to and availability of locally and regionally produced agricultural products. FMPP offers two types of projects: Capacity Building and Community Development Training and Technical Assistance. Both have a three-year performance period. Funding ranges from $50,000 to $500,000.
LFPP funds projects that develop, coordinate and expand local and regional food business enterprises that serve as intermediaries and help increase access to and availability of locally and regionally produced agricultural products. LFPP offers 18-month Planning Grants and 3-year Implementation Grants. Funding ranges from $25,000 to $500,000.
Eligible applicants include agricultural businesses or cooperatives, producer networks or associations, community supported agriculture networks or associations, food councils, local governments, nonprofit corporations, public benefit corporations, economic development corporations, regional farmers market authorities, and tribal governments.
Both FMPP and LFPP require matching funds equal to 25 percent of the total Federal portion of the grant. Additionally, both FMPP and LFPP applicants may use up to $6,500 of the amount requested in their application for upgrades to equipment to improve food safety.
In addition to FMLFPP, LAMP encompasses the Regional Food System Partnership grants and the Value-Added Producer Grants (VAPG) Program. LAMP aims to:
- Connect and cultivate regional food economies through public-private partnerships.
- Support the development of business plans, feasibility studies, and strategies for value-added agricultural production and local and regional food system infrastructure.
- Strengthen capacity and regional food system development through community collaboration and expansion of mid-tier value chains.
- Improve income and economic opportunities for producers and food businesses through job creation.
- Simplify the application and the reporting processes for the grants administered under the Program.
For more information about grant eligibility, previously funded projects and upcoming informational webinars, visit the AMS Grants website.
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