Press release – Last week, on behalf of the White House Rural Council, six federal agencies joined together to announce the selection of 27 communities in 22 states that will participate in Local Foods, Local Places, a federal initiative that helps communities increase economic opportunities for local farmers and related businesses, create vibrant places and promote childhood wellness by improving access to healthy local food.
Developed as a partnership among the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of Transportation, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and the Delta Regional Authority, this initiative is part of the White House Rural Council’s Rural Impact work to improve quality of life and upward mobility for children and families in rural and tribal communities.
“Local Foods, Local Places helps people access healthy local food and supports new businesses in neighborhoods that need investment,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “The program is good for the environment, public health and the economy. By helping bring healthy local food to market and offering new walking and biking options, Local Foods, Local Places can help improve air quality, support local economies, and protect undeveloped green space.”
Excerpt: A Toledo man’s effort to establish “urban agriculture” in Toledo’s central city is running up against nuisance complaints brought by neighbors. Thomas Jackson, 44, of 1489 Milburn Ave., has piled up wood chips on seven parcels centering on Auburn and Milburn avenues.
1 Local food movement pushes fresh produce [Chicago Tribune]
Excerpt: The local food movement stretches way, way back, to a time when produce didn’t arrive from thousands of miles away in a semitrailer to land in shrink wrap …
Excerpt: A brewing controversy over school food nutrition standards now seems likely to end in a relative victory for children’s health.
Excerpt: At CEA Farms, growing produce hydroponically in greenhouses increases yields while reducing costs.
WASHINGTON, Jan. 19, 2016 — Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will begin offering farm ownership microloans, creating a new financing avenue for farmers to buy and improve property. These microloans will be especially helpful to beginning or underserved farmers, U.S. veterans looking for a career in farming, and those who have small and mid-sized farming operations.
“Many producers, especially new and underserved farmers, tell us that access to land is one of the biggest challenges they face in establishing and growing their own farming operation,” said Harden. “USDA is making it easier for new farmers to hit the ground running and get access to the land that they need to establish their farms or improve their property.”
By focusing on building a quality product, encouraging community and supporting their farmer customers, Laramie, Wyoming-based Bright Agrotech looks to have a bright and busy future ahead of it.
The company has continued to grow since Seedstock first profiled them here in 2012, something CEO and founder Dr. Nate Storey attributes to the broad appeal of the company’s mission.
“No matter if you’re like the uber liberal kind of person on the left side of things, or a super conservative person on the right side of things, everyone can get on board with the idea that local production is better,” says Storey. “Everyone can get on board with the idea that when we spend money in our communities, that money stays in our communities.”
1 A start-up that aims to bring back the farm-to-vase bouquet [New York Times]
Excerpt: The locavore movement urges buying food produced in one’s immediate region. Farmgirl Flowers is trying to do the same for flowers.
1 ‘Buy Local’ group gets $59K to boost agriculture in central Massachusetts [Metrowest Daily News]
Excerpt: After forming in 2014, a nonprofit working to promote local agriculture in central Massachusetts will get a major boost this year from …