WASHINGTON, July 25, 2022 -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) today announced it has signed a cooperative agreement with Delaware under the Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement Program (LFPA). Through LFPA, the Delaware Department of Agriculture will work with community partners and locally established food distribution programs to purchase, transport, and distribute food products grown, produced, and processed by small scale, specialty, and diverse underserved producers in Delaware.
“USDA is excited to partner with Delaware 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.”
The LFPA funds will facilitate and increase direct-to-market sales of food products grown by Delaware farmers to Delaware community members by establishing a farmer cooperative, focused on marketing and promotion to maximize capacity of small, underserved farmers that have limited resources. DDA’s program will also identify existing community outlets providing food access to under-resourced populations with demonstrated food insecurities and develop a model for small farmers and community outlets to establish their own procurement relationships.
"We are thrilled to announce through strategic partnerships, Delaware has been selected to receive funding through USDA's Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement. Through the work of our team here at the Department and our collaborators, we recognize the importance of creating a long-term solution that will benefit the citizens of Delaware," said Secretary of Agriculture Michael T. Scuse. “This funding will not only be used to make direct food purchases from farmers producing Delaware-grown products, but also to create a pilot program to establish a farmer co-op, maximizing the capacity of small farms; and establish a direct-to-consumer procurement model that will lead to increased access to fresh and frozen foods for Delawareans struggling with food insecurities."
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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