Indiana Agriculture Insider

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This week the Indiana State Department of Agriculture unveiled a new Indiana Dairy Strategy, which focuses on dairy business expansion, development and attraction to our great Hoosier state. Indiana Dairy Strategy 2.0 is an update to the previous dairy strategy released in 2015.

America’s dairy farmers are critical to agriculture, not just in Indiana, but around the world. Dairy products provide a rich source of protein and other vital nutrients at an affordable cost for consumers and it is readily available in almost all grocery stores. While the coronavirus pandemic did cause some disruptions for the dairy industry, this strategy focuses on data pre-COVID-19.

The Indiana Dairy Strategy 2.0 was developed to better understand our current dairy industry environment and its strengths. It also gives an overview of the data trends the industry has seen play out over the past few years. A goal of the dairy strategy was to find new ways to strengthen our dairy industry and work with our current processors to increase milk outlets.

Some highlights of the dairy strategy are as follows

  • Indiana produces a net surplus of 3.5 million pounds of milk each day
  • Indiana producers and farmers have made strides around sustainability and work each day to reduce ecological impact
  • A key asset in growing Indiana’s dairy sector is the state’s advantage of critical infrastructure
  • Indiana has a positive regulatory and tax environment for dairy producers and processors

ISDAIG dev grant

Indiana Grown has announced a grant program with funds dedicated to the development of food councils in Indiana. A food council is a community-based coalition created to build a stronger food system. Much of the work done by these regional organizations aligns with Indiana Grown’s mission and benefits farmers and producers statewide.

COVID-19 has resulted in the cancellation of many annual Indiana Grown events and subsequent redistribution of the program’s funds allowing Indiana Grown to allocate $100,000 to select applicants, with a maximum award of $25,000 per grantee.

Any established food council in Indiana is eligible to apply. New groups or organizations formed after Jan. 1, 2021 are not eligible. Food councils are defined as networks that represent multiple stakeholders and that are either sanctioned by a government body or exist independently of government, and address food-related issues and needs within a city, county, state, tribal, multi-county or other designated region. To find out more about Indiana food councils, click here.

The application deadline is Feb. 4, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. (EST). Click here to begin the grant application process. Additional information, including project timelines and required documents, can be found here.



The Indiana State Department of Agriculture and the State Soil Conservation Board awarded $975,651 in matching grant funds to 15 soil and water conservation districts and organizations through the Clean Water Indiana program.

The Clean Water Indiana program is administered by the state’s conservation board. The program provides financial assistance to landowners and conservation groups that are working to reduce runoff from non-point sources of water pollution, whether it’s on agricultural land, urban areas or eroding streambanks.

Once received, districts can use the funds to partner with other counties or address specific needs within their jurisdiction. Some examples include participating in a cost share program, hiring staff, providing technical assistance, implementing cover crop incentive programs or increasing watershed capacity.

Clean Water Indiana is managed by ISDA’s Division of Soil Conservation and funded by a portion of the state’s cigarette tax.

Click the read more button for a full list of award recipients

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Want to begin exporting? Food Export-Midwest can help Indiana companies expand markets and increase sales! Whether a company is just getting started or is already exporting to several countries, Food Export-Midwest has multiple programs and services to help. Learn more ways to help grow exports of value-added food and agricultural products here.

Food Export- Midwest supports participating companies on exporting and expanding market opportunities in order to bring US products to the world with three tiers of services: Exporter Education, Market Entry, and Market Promotion. Food Export offers a variety of Educational resources to U.S. suppliers looking to increase their knowledge and understanding of the exporting industry and most resources are available at no cost. Food Export’s Market Entry programs offer potential market research, opportunities to meet with international buyers, assistance at international tradeshows, and ways to obtain sales leads from interested importers. Lastly, increase market share with Food Export-Midwest’s Branded Program. The Branded Program provides 50% cost reimbursement for a wide variety of international marketing activities including advertising, in-store promotions and product demonstrations, fees for exhibiting at overseas trade shows and selected trade shows held in the U.S., public relations, marketing and more. Learn more about these programs here.

With over 50 activities planned for 2021, Food Export is prepared to help grow exports of value-added food and agricultural products. Check out Food Export’s calendar of events here. Be sure to create an online account at to make the most of the customized online experience. It is quick, easy, and free to sign up! Just click on Create An Account at the top right corner of the homepage to get started.

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ISDAfresh connect

Fresh Connect Central, a social enterprise of Gleaners Food Bank, is designed to help food insecure citizens in Indiana receive fresh fruits and vegetables and limit food waste. Rather than sending your excess product to a landfill or leaving it in the field, ISDA encourages donations to Gleaners Fresh Connect through the Farm to Food Bank Project can fund harvest, processing and transportation of donated product. This project is a partnership with the Indiana Department of Health and supported by USDA Food and Nutrition Service grant funding. Donations will be distributed to all of Indiana’s 11 The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) food banks. 

Interested growers can contact Ashley Shoemaker Hill for more information. 

Click the read more button to learn more about this program 



February 17, 19, 22, 24, 26:  Indiana FFA Virtual Advocacy Day
Find more information here

February 18 – 19USDA's 97th Agricultural Outlook Forum
Find more information here

February  20 – 27:  National FFA Week 
Find more information here

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