U.S. Department of Agriculture: Local Food Promotion Program

The Local Food Promotion Program funds projects that develop, coordinate, and expand local and regional food business enterprises that engage as intermediaries in indirect producer to consumer marketing to help increase access to and availability of locally and regionally produced agricultural products. The program focuses on:

* Supporting and promoting local and regional food business enterprises that engage as intermediaries in indirect producer-to-consumer marketing
* Supporting the processing, aggregation, distribution, and storage of local and regional food products that are marketed locally or regionally, including value-added agricultural products
* Encouraging the development of value-added agricultural products;
* Assisting with business development plans and feasibility studies
* Developing marketing strategies for producers of local food products and value-added agricultural products in new and existing markets
* Facilitating regional food chain coordination and mid-tier value chain development
* Promoting new business opportunities and marketing strategies to reduce on-farm food waste
* Responding to changing technology needs in indirect producer-to-consumer marketing
* Covering expenses to cost incurred in obtaining food safety certification related and improvements to food safety practices and equipment

There are two different project types: Planning and Implementation.

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. Activities include developing, coordinating, and expanding such businesses. Projects may 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 to assist in COVID response and recovery efforts.
* 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.
* Development of strategies and/or above practices to support and partner with other organizations affected by the pandemic. This could allow larger, more experienced entities to support smaller organizations who could also benefit from a federal grant.
* Developing tools, techniques, or practices that can be rapidly adopted by local agriculture markets, including those that provide direct financial support to a network of markets to assist in COVID response and recovery efforts.

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. Activities include developing, coordinating, or expanding such businesses. Projects may include, but are not limited to:

* Developing or expanding food incubator programs or mid-tier value chains to assist in COVID response and recovery efforts.
* 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 potentially in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
* Investigating and implementing more cost-effective means of transportation for food supply chains through backhaul, route optimization, and/or other operational efficiencies.
* Developing strategies and/or above practices to support and partner with other organizations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This could allow larger, more experienced entities to support smaller organizations who could also benefit from a federal grant.
* Developing tools, techniques, or practices that can be rapidly adopted by local agriculture markets, including those that provide direct financial support to a network of markets to assist in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.

Amount:
* Planning grants: $25,000-$200,000
* Implementation grants: $100,000-$750,000

A match of 10% or 25% is required depending on the funding source legislation.

Eligibility: Agricultural Businesses or Cooperatives, Producer Networks or Associations, CSA Networks or Associations, Food Councils, Local Governments, Nonprofit Corporations, Public Benefit Corporations, Economic Development Corporations, Regional Farmers Market Authorities, Tribal Governments.

Deadline: June 21, 2021

Resource Information
Funder U.S. Department of Agriculture
Eligibility For Profit Organization, Local Government, Nonprofit Organization, Tribal Government
Resource URL: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=333340
Sector Rural Development, Agriculture
Grant Amount $50,000-$750,000
Deadline Closed