WASHINGTON, June 28, 2022 -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) today announced it has signed a cooperative agreement with Guam under the Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement Program (LFPA). LFPA funding will be used by the Guam Department of Agriculture (DOAG) to improve agricultural supply-chain resiliency, support underserved producers, strengthen Guam’s local food system, and improve health and wellness in underserved communities.
“USDA is excited to partner with Guam to promote economic opportunities for farmers and producers and to increase access to locally sourced, fresh, healthy, and nutritious food in underserved communities,” said USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Jenny Lester Moffitt. “The Local Food Purchase Cooperative Agreement Program will improve food and agricultural supply-chain resiliency and increase local food consumption around the country.”
DOAG intends to use LFPA funding to purchase products from members of the Farmers’ Cooperative Association of Guam (FCAG) to provide economic growth opportunities while affirming partnerships between farmers and multiple organizations. The cooperative association will identify and target underserved producers for the program. DOAG anticipates reaching at least 54 producers across the island.
Purchased food items will be distributed directly to underserved communities through an established food bank distribution center; a partnership between DOAG, Government of Guam partners, non-governmental organizations, and nonprofit organizations. These partners will use the existing distribution infrastructure to distribute products to underserved communities that cannot easily access or afford local produce.
“The farmers of Guam and our underserved communities will both benefit tremendously from this new cooperative partnership, and I look forward to further supporting these initiatives that build on our island’s economic growth,” said Governor Lou Leon Guerrero.
“Our post-pandemic resiliency will be reinforced by our commitment to increasing food security and economic diversity, so we will continue working together with the USDA and our federal partners to make progress in these areas,” said Lt. Governor Josh Tenorio.
The LFPA program is authorized by the American Rescue Plan to maintain and improve food and agricultural supply chain resiliency. Through this program, USDA will award up to $400 million through non-competitive cooperative agreements with state and tribal governments to support local, regional, and underserved producers through the purchase of food produced within the state or within 400 miles of delivery destination.
AMS looks forward to continuing to sign agreements under this innovative program that allows state and tribal governments to procure and distribute local and regional foods and beverages that are healthy, nutritious, and unique to their geographic area.
More information about the program is available on AMS’s Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement Program webpage.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
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