Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production News

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Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production News




Highlights from USDA

graphical representation of US map showing FPAC Business Centers by region


  • USDA has announced the creation of 12 new Regional Food Business Centers that will provide national coverage coordination, technical assistance, and capacity building to help farmers, ranchers, and other food businesses access new markets and navigate federal, state, and local resources, thereby closing the gaps to success. View the press release and announcement here. For more information visit the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service Regional Food Business Centers Program
  • The goal of the American Rescue Plan Technical Assistance Investment Program is to ensure improved understanding of and equitable participation in the full range of USDA programs and services among underserved farmers, ranchers, forest landowners and operators. Through this program, a network of cooperators is working collaboratively with USDA and with other cooperators to deliver targeted technical assistance programs and outreach activities focused on a range of topics.
  • There is still time to complete the 2022 Census of Agriculture! Even small plots of land - whether rural or urban - growing fruit, vegetables or some food animals count if $1,000 or more of such products were raised and sold, or normally would have been sold, during the Census year. Producers can respond online at usda.gov or by mail.
  • At the AIM for Climate Summit, USDA leadership will discuss a systemic approach to innovation for climate-smart food systems and more. Join in person from May 8-10 in Washington, D.C. or watch the livestream. For those interested in food loss and waste, May 10th will include a panel discussion focused on this important topic.
  • The Food and Agriculture Mapper and Explorer brings together data from dozens of publicly available datasets to make it easy for food system practitioners to search and visualize up-to-date information about U.S. local and regional food systems. This new tool is an open-access resource designed to increase the accessibility of local and regional food systems data for federal grant applicants, farmers and food entrepreneurs, and researchers. To learn more about navigating this tool with case study examples, watch the recorded webinar online. If you would like to share any recommendations on this tool, submit them on the recommendations page. If you don’t see yourself or other businesses in your community, register them through our USDA Local Food Directories portal.
photo of USDA employees in Kansas City, MO
  • OUAIP staff are on the road! The grants & agreements team recently visited Kansas City, MO to meet with award recipients. They were warmly welcomed as they traveled to six projects in Kansas City, MO; Douglas County, KS; Common Ground Producers in Wichita, KS; The Giving Grove; Cultivate Kansas City, and The KC Farm School at Gibbs Road. Staff were so impressed by partnerships and connections being made on the ground to support a robust local food system

People’s Garden Initiative

map of People's Garden locations

Happy Anniversary to The People’s Garden! Last May, USDA renewed the People’s Garden initiative, which has grown to 1,300 gardens across the country. We invite you to join us by registering your local garden on the USDA People’s Garden website. Community gardens, urban farms, school gardens, and small-scale agriculture projects in rural, suburban and urban areas can join the “People’s Garden” community.  



plant 2023 logo

It’s that time of year! Share your #Plant23 Stories with us and make sure to tag @FarmersGov. We’ll be celebrating the diversity of your plantings!

People’s Garden Webinar Series

Thanks to all that attended the People’s Garden webinar “Celebrating National Garden Month”. For those who were unable to attend, the recording is available on-demand by visiting People’s Garden Webinars.

Join us on May 24th at 3 p.m. ET for the next webinar in the series, “Composting Awareness”. We will be sharing resources and examples of ways to start engaging your community on composting and encourage neighbors and local establishments to reduce food waste and begin composting (register for the webinar here).

Featured Garden of the Month

people's garden ribbon cutting ceremony in St Louis MO between NRCS, Seed St Louis and Brittany Woods Middle School

NRCS Missouri, Seed St. Louis and Brittany Woods Middle School held a ribbon cutting ceremony on April 3rd to celebrate the school’s garden earning the People’s Garden title. Speakers included The School District of University City Superintendent Sharonica Hardin-Bartley, University City Mayor Terry Crow, NRCS Urban Agriculture Specialist Sarah Szachnieski, Seed St. Louis CEO Matt Schindler and FSA Missouri State Committee member Tony White spoke at the event. After the ribbon cutting ceremony, the students excitingly led tours through the garden and classrooms to show all their hard work.


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