AMS is helping communities scale up local and regional food systems and strengthen their economies. Whether you are an individual farmer looking to extend your growing season, a cooperative of growers looking to rebuild a food hub, a farmers’ market that wants to accept SNAP benefits, a school that needs cold storage to store locally procured meat, or anyone in between, we can help you identify funding opportunities to support your local food efforts based on where you are in the supply chain.
Resources for people who will be applying for funding through the Farmers Market and/or Local Foods Promotion Programs.
A research and education center with programs in food system policy, food communities, food production, and food system sustainability. Its Maryland Food System Map is a useful resource to Maryland-based applicants seeking information on existing infrastructure. The CLF’s Food Policy Network project “will support the development of effective and robust food policy at the state and local levels by working with existing food policy councils, national organizations and other interested groups.”
The MSU Center for Regional Food Systems engages the people of Michigan, the United States and the world in developing regionally integrated, sustainable food systems. Their website offers resources ranging from briefs and fact sheets to videos and a webinar series on topics such as institutional sourcing of local food, farm-to-school, farmers markets, and social justice in the food system.
Discover a wealth of educational materials for farmers, ranchers, ag professionals, community organizers and others who are striving to reconfigure the nation’s food system so more value stays in food-producing communities.
The content on this page is available as a topic brief (PDF download from the SARE website), Building Local and Regional Food Systems.
SNAP and Farmers Markets: https://www.fns.usda.gov/ebt/snap-and-farmers-markets
Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program: https://nifa.usda.gov/program/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed): https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-education-snap-ed
Overview of federal food assistance programs and funding opportunities.
AMS’s Marketing Services Division (MSD) maintains four separate online directories of local/regional food enterprises, covering Farmers Markets, CSAs, Food Hubs and On-Farm Markets. These entries are based on voluntary submissions by market/food enterprise managers.
Market or food enterprise managers who wish to add listings to the directories or update current listings may do so by following the instructions here.
USDA also provides many maps and mapping applications that may be useful in gathering information about local/regional food activities, demographics, and neighborhood characteristics. See what types of data and information are available at your fingertips.
The USDA National Agricultural Library has compiled a listing of local food related reports and resources. These resources may be especially helpful for pre-award research and proposal writing.
Building a successful meat processing business is far from easy. The feasibility studies listed in this resource detail many of the complications, challenges, and costs (sometimes in great financial detail).