USDA Agriculture Marketing Service
Today USDA opened the annual updating of the National Farmers Market Directory. The Directory captures information about where and when farmers markets operate, if they participate in federal nutrition benefit programs, and detailed information about their seasonality and location. It is a great tool for markets to make sure people in their community can find them; in addition to helping people find the closest farmers market, they are included in maps, mobile apps and other stats. Read more »
As we begin a new year, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on USDA’s accomplishments in 2010. Last year, millions of families, communities and businesses across the nation benefitted from USDA’s programs. Even during these tough economic times, working with the rest of the Obama Administration, USDA has produced real results for Americans.
Since I came to USDA, we have taken steps to put Americans back to work while rebuilding a strong foundation for sustainable future economic growth – especially in our rural communities. We provided over $1 billion in financing to help thousands of small and emerging rural businesses expand, grow and innovate, creating or saving nearly 200,000 jobs. We supported the construction and renovation of 1,400 critical community facilities projects for millions of rural residents including 312 education facilities, 196 libraries, 179 health care facilities, and 563 fire, rescue, and public safety facilities. The Recovery Act gave us a real boost in these efforts. Described in our Working for Rural Communities Report, these investments continue to create jobs and stimulate economic activity in rural communities so that unemployment rates are dropping around rural America. Read more »
USDA Farmers Market Directory Counts Nearly 900 Winter Farmers Markets.
The tents are up. The vendors are ready, with proud displays of local produce, meats, baked goods, and other delights. Customers are out – shopping, visiting, and mingling. It’s a typical farmers market scene, robust with fresh, healthful, local food and lively connections between consumers and producers.
It must be the height of summer, right? Read more »
In 2010, the USDA National Farmers Market Directory counted over 6,200 operational farmers markets in the country. That’s more than a 16 percent growth in farmers markets from 2009. In every state and season, shoppers flock to nearby farmers markets in search of healthy, fresh foods. Farmers markets can offer it all: from seasonal, fresh produce to local meats, dairy products to locally baked bread and fragrant cut flowers. Read more »
We are proudly in the middle of the eleventh annual National Farmers Market Week as declared by USDA. This year, Secretary Vilsack marked this important milestone with an official Declaration acknowledging the role farmers markets play in stimulating local economies, strengthening communities and supporting farmers.
As part of National Farmers Market Week, we’re also announcing the results of our latest farmers market survey, and the numbers are impressive: 6,100 farmers markets are now operating across the country – a stunning 16% growth from last year! These markets are bringing folks together in cities, towns, suburbs and rural areas of every state in the nation, and they have on offer the freshest produce, meats, cheese, flowers, breads, and other products from their surrounding farms and ranches. Read more »