LFPA Executive Summary – Virginia

Using the LFPA funds, the Virginia Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services will award sub-grants to agencies with the capacity to procure foods from local sources, focusing on socially disadvantaged farmers/vendors. The sub-grantees will collaborate with food distribution agencies to distribute these products to food insecure individuals, focusing on serving socially disadvantaged communities. The program will strive to develop long-term relationships to expand opportunities for the farmers/vendors to bring more local foods to programs like the Department of Defense Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program that currently distribute less than 10% of Virginia grown products. Many of the USDA food programs like The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), and the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) are great nutrition programs but they provide very little locally grown products. The LFPA dollars will allow for a great increase in the amount of local foods that will work in partnership with these existing programs to provide a full range of foods for families in need. Once these relationships have been established through the LFPA program, Virginia can continue to provide local options after the completion of the grant period. One particular goal will be to ensure that the program reaches all areas of the Commonwealth to create a hunger free Virginia.  We estimate that the program will purchase food from 166 local farmers and that the program will distribute food to 164,000 individuals per month.