Today, in support of the Trump Administration’s Executive Order on Promoting Agriculture and Rural Prosperity in America, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced an opportunity to apply for technical assistance for communities. If you are interested in revitalizing neighborhoods through the development of local food systems, the assistance will be provided through the Local Foods Local Places (LFLP) program.
“By helping communities grow their local food system, Local Foods, Local Places helps improve people’s health, their environment, and the economy,” said EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez. “Today EPA is providing opportunities for more communities, particularly those in Opportunity Zones and other disadvantaged areas, by providing technical assistance and the expertise needed to provide access to healthier, locally produced food.”
Local Foods, Local Places supports projects that:
- Create livable, walkable, economically vibrant main streets and mixed-use neighborhoods.
- Boost economic opportunities for local farmers and main street businesses.
- Improve access to healthy, local food, especially among disadvantaged populations.
LFLP partner communities work with a team of agricultural, environmental, public health and regional economic development experts to set goals and identify local assets that can support the local food economy. Communities also develop an action plan and identify potential resources from the participating federal agencies to support implementation.
Eligible applicants include local governments, Indian tribes, and nonprofit institutions and organizations proposing to work in a neighborhood, town, or city of any size anywhere in the United States. Communities with projects located in federal designated Opportunity Zones will receive special consideration. Highest consideration will be given to those communities who can identify how Local Foods, Local Places assistance will leverage the Opportunity Zone designation to support implementation of the resulting action plan. The deadline for applications is September 30, 2019.
Since its launch in 2014, Local Foods, Local Places has selected 108 communities across the country to help develop local food enterprises, such as farmers markets, community gardens and cooperative grocery stores, that improve environmental, economic and health outcomes. Over the years, this program has been supported by several federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Department of Transportation, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Northern Border Regional Commission, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and the Delta Regional Authority.
To apply for LFLP assistance: https://www.epa.gov/smartgrowth/local-foods-local-places-2019-2020-application
To see a list and map of designated Opportunity Zones: https://www.cdfifund.gov/Pages/Opportunity-Zones.aspx.