ALBANY — State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball has announced that the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets is now accepting applications for its nearly $26 million New York Food for New York Families program. The program, which is funded through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), will provide a boost to New York farmers, increase communities’ access to local foods, and further enhance the resiliency of New York’s food system. Applications for funding are due January 18, 2023 and additional information is available at https://agriculture.ny.gov/rfp-0283-new-york-food-new-york-families-track-1 and https://agriculture.ny.gov/rfa-0284-new-york-food-new-york-families-track-2.
Commissioner Ball said, “Just a few weeks ago, we were proud to welcome USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Jenny Lester Moffitt to New York State for an announcement of this tremendous award. The New York Food for New York Families program is a perfect addition to our existing programs, like Nourish NY and Farm-to-School. We are looking forward to seeing a strong response from potential applicants and developing new partnerships in our work to support our farmers and provide much needed food to families in need.”
The Department was awarded $25.8 million through the USDA’s Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement (LFPA) Program to implement the New York Food for New York Families Program. The program will create a more resilient statewide food system that supports local farms and provides high quality, nutritious food to communities facing food insecurity. Food purchases will support local and traditionally disadvantaged farmers by building and expanding economic opportunities and creating new marketing channels for them within the state while ensuring local food gets to New York families who need it most.
The main goals of the program are to establish and broaden partnerships between New York farmers/producers, the food distribution community and local food networks to ensure distribution of fresh nutritious foods in rural, remote, and/or underserved areas; improve food access for underserved communities by considering regional challenges; and support local and traditionally disadvantaged farmers/producers by expanding and creating marketing and economic opportunities. Eligible applicants include not-for-profit organizations, agricultural cooperatives, tribal organizations, public educational institutions and local or municipal governments.
There are two grant opportunities available through the program. Track 1 is a competitive opportunity focused on the purchase and distribution of New York food products. These awards will range from $200,000 to $2 million, and 67 percent of the budget must be spent on New York food products. Track 2 is a non-competitive, first-come, first-serve grant opportunity for eligible applications. This funding track will be awarded to organizations working within the food system to help producers access new markets, fill gaps in the supply and distribution chain, or increase access of underserved communities to local food. These individual awards will range from $10,000 to $50,000.
For more information on the program and to apply, visit https://agriculture.ny.gov/rfp-0283-new-york-food-new-york-families-track-1 and https://agriculture.ny.gov/rfa-0284-new-york-food-new-york-families-track-2. The deadline for applications for both funding tracks is January 18, 2023 at 4 p.m. Applications for funding must conform to the format provided in the Grants Gateway. Two webinars with program information will take place on the dates listed below. Additional details on the webinars will be announced in the coming weeks.
- Tuesday, November 15 at 10 a.m.
- Thursday, December 1 at 3 p.m.
Questions concerning the funding tracks should be submitted in writing to NYSNYS@agriculture.ny.gov. Technical assistance and resources for applicants to access Grants Gateway and complete an application are available here.
The State has launched several groundbreaking programs in recent years to improve access to healthy, locally grown foods and to bring New York-grown foods and beverages to underserved communities and New York State schools. The 30%NYS Initiative, the State’s Farm-to School program and child nutrition programs administered by the State Education Department are focused on buying more local products from New York farmers and increasing healthy and nutritious local foods for New York school lunches.
The Nourish NY initiative has purchased, through the state’s network of food banks and emergency food providers, nearly $100 million worth of food from local farmers and delivered it to families in need. So far, nearly 50 million meals have been delivered. In addition, the State’s Council on Hunger and Food Policy convenes to provide state policymakers with expertise on how to address hunger and improve access to healthy, local food for New York State residents. The work of the Council was critical during the establishment of the Nourish New York program, thanks to its focus on strengthening ties and cooperation between programs addressing hunger and those who produce and supply food.
–New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets