Tough economic conditions can make it difficult to access healthy, fresh, and affordable produce. That’s why USDA is pleased to announce this year’s grants recipients of the Farmers Market Promotion Program. This important program provides grants to local farmers and producers so they can grow their income while making make fresh, healthy food available to more families across the country – particularly in low income and underserved communities.
In fact, many of the grants this year were invested to increase access to fresh foods specifically in low-income communities, accounting for 64 percent of the total projects funded. This year’s portfolio brings USDA’s investment in direct-to-consumer and alternative marketing to more than $23 million over the history of the Farmers Market Promotion Program.
Fresh, nutritious food is a cornerstone of a community’s physical health, but community health is more than just physical well-being. A vibrant, healthy community also encompasses sustainable economic opportunities and outcomes for local farmers and producers who, in turn, provide consumers the opportunity to make healthier food choices. By funding projects that support these goals, the Farmers Market Promotion Program continues to contribute to the economic and physical health of communities around the country.
To find out more about the nearly 150 projects funded for 2011, visit www.ams.usda.gov/fmpp.