USDA seeks food aid grants for school districts
WASHINGTON DC – The United States Department of Agriculture seeks applications for school districts to purchase locally produced food through the Cooperative Local Food Agreements for Schools program.
According to a USDA press release, the agency has $200 million to give to state governments to purchase agricultural products from local, regional, small and underserved farmers and ranchers. The goal is to help both small farmers and school districts get back to normal in the wake of the pandemic and to develop alternative approaches to dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on supply chains. national procurement.
“This program is another example of how the USDA is working to build a more resilient food system rooted in local and regional production where the small can compete with the big because a greater share of the profits will go to those who grow, harvest and prepare our food,” USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said in the press release.
According to the USDA, cooperative agreements with states under the program will provide governments with the ability to establish purchasing and partnership programs with farmers and ranchers that meet local needs, consider factors environmental, take into account harvest times, improve the supply chain and meet the needs of schools.
The program is operated under the charter of the Commodity Credit Corporation. The CCC was established in 1933 to administer the USDA’s crop price support programs, and the agency’s operations were later expanded to include international U.S. food aid and market development, according to the USDA.