EPA’s Local Foods, Local Places – Encouraging Local Farming Economy

EPA’s Pruitt Visits ‘Local Foods, Local Places’ Summit

EPA News Release
July 25, 2017

Administrator Scott Pruitt met with community leaders at the Local Foods, Local Places (LFLP) summit about how investment in the local food economy can help boost economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses in communities across the country.

“Supporting farmers and businesses helps communities’ diversify their economies to create new jobs and economic activity, and revitalize main streets and surrounding areas while also protecting the environment,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.

 

EPA hosted more than 70 local leaders and participants, in addition to representatives from other federal agencies to discuss community-driven efforts to protect air and water quality, preserve open space and farmland, and boost economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses. Early analysis shows that every $3 of federal investment through LFLP has helped communities attract $55 in additional investment.

Local Foods, Local Places provides technical assistance to help communities diversify their economies through agriculture and local foods.  To date, 90 communities have received assistance through the program and its precursor program, Livable Communities in Appalachia, to create farmers markets, community kitchens and other food-related enterprises. Some examples of community success from investing in the local food economy include:

• Huntington, W.Va., started the Wild Ramp, a farmer co-op market that has sold more than $2 million dollars of goods from local farmers in five years of operation;

Huntington Sustainability Fair, 2nd Annual Farm to Table Fundraiser Dinner, The Wild Ramp – tap for link.

 

 

• Colleton Commercial Kitchen in Walterboro, S.C., helped create 12 new businesses and 60 new jobs in less than two years;

Cooking up business, serving up success. tap for link

 

 

• Corbin, Ky., opened a farmers’ market on a vacant lot on main street, spurring downtown revitalization and reducing the vacancy rate on the main street from 40 percent to 5 percent in two years.

Produce with FLAVOR. Traditional and unique jams and jellies. Keeps $ in the community. Also, locally made soap and even lip balm. Adam Shelby Sulfridge tap for market link

 

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Seriously, this reminds me so much of the 1950-1970’s when growing food and local marketing places were a hub and an important part of local life and economy as I was growing up. Not only is it healthy for business but “organic” where you know the farmer and methods is a “heck” of a lot better for you. This isn’t novel or new but simply a renewing of core values and strengths. Imagine how many city lots properly maintained could help local food banks supply the needs of the homeless and needy. Or how many social welfare recipients could actually be of benefit in communities rather than a drain.

For once, at least, EPA is encouraging true progress not destroying it. But where is media on this? Oh right, it’s not bad news about Trump.

–Uriel–

 

About Uriel

Retired educator and constitutionalist
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7 Responses to EPA’s Local Foods, Local Places – Encouraging Local Farming Economy

  1. Wise Owl says:

    Excellent, Uriel!

    • Uriel says:

      for quite a while little experimental groups cropped up and did well but without much government attention. looks like they now have some focus in government circles

  2. SafeSpace says:

    Good news — Finally a decent program from a federal gummint agency.

    Here in my NE GA mountain county, 60% of the land belongs to the USFS. Over half of what remains is family farms. Cattle, chickens, corn, veggies, and leafy greens are the major crops. Our State Ag Extension Office in conjunction with the County government run a large and vibrant farmer’s market every week from spring thru fall. Additionally, there are at least three farm-to-table restaurants here, one “gourmay” and the other two affordable by peons like me.

    My point is that it actually takes zero federal involvement to support local farmers and their crops: If you are in a mostly-rural county, and if your state ag extension office and your county commission and/or chamber of commerce recognize the economic benefits in promoting these efforts, you can create a successful local program that truly benefits everyone from producer to consumer.

    • Uriel says:

      excellent point….not long ago I actually considered if push came to shove how an apartment complex I lived in could survive and provide fresh veggies if it had to…I am not saying panic, but this kind of cooperation as you said can actually work well AT THE CORE not from federal government (though small grants to get started I am sure are appreciated). Cities, counties, and states need to take a hard look at the survival needs of their communities NOW not just for man-made but also natural disasters with plans just like local farmers markets to back up in case of downed transportation and communication.

  3. SafeSpace says:

    Forgot to mention that we have two family farms that sell “shares” in their annual vegetable production. For x dollars you get x bushels of various veggies, which you pick up every week or two. Both these farms are “organic” and do not use pesticides, nor do they fool around with genetically-modified seeds. The pricing works well for large families.

    • Uriel says:

      What a great idea. An old farmer friend used to open his fields to any who would pick the harvest…needless to say not many took advantage but rather preferred the things be picked and bundled “for them”

  4. vonmesser says:

    About time.

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