Keep up with the latest policy news, USDA Funding Announcements, and food systems happenings in the Northeast.
Crossroads Community Food Network uses Farm Bill funding- including the Local Food Promotion Program, Community Food Projects, and Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentives Program- to build accessible markets and serve low-income food entrepreneurs in Maryland. Christie Balch, Crossroads Community Food Network’s Executive Director, answers questions about the organization, and business owner Nancia Sical shares her experience of using the community kitchen that was made possible by these Farm Bill programs.
Editor’s note: Hartford Public Schools in Hartford, Connecticut was awarded a 2017 USDA Farm to School grant to incorporate higher volumes of local food into the school menu. The grant will allow the district to install new processing equipment to establish an enhanced "central production kitchen" in Hartford's Journalism & Media Academy. This kitchen will process, package, and distribute local foods to a network of eighteen schools while increasing the flavor and variety of school meals. Hartford schools will also expand the district's partnership with FoodCorps to increase nutrition promotion and food education in both the classroom and cafeteria. We wanted to learn more about this important project and the crucial support of farmers, FoodCorps, community partners, and the USDA that made it possible.
Immigrants to the United States often experience significant obstacles as they seek to create a life here. Financial, cultural, language, education, and a whole host of other concerns can overwhelm immigrant communities. This is why many immigrant groups have historically organized their communities to provide mutual aid and resources that ease the stress, suffering, and bewilderment which accompanies moving to another country and acclimating to a new culture. One such organization is the African Alliance of Rhode Island (AARI).
NESAWG staff and board strongly condemn our government’s inhumane and unjust actions against immigrants and call humane treatment for everyone seeking to enter this country whether they are escaping violence, pursuing a better life, or joining family members who already live here. We acknowledge that all people except those indigenous to this land are settlers (regardless of status as immigrants or enslaved peoples), and that the legacy of land theft and racism can be traced from colonization to our present crisis. READ MORE
Reportback from the NASDA Annual Meeting
This innovative start-up uses Farm Bill funding to open new markets for local seafood and employ local youth in Philadelphia. We sat down with Project Director Talia Young to discuss the ins and outs of starting a youth-run business and connecting urban customers to rural fisherpeople, food chain workers, and seafood seasonality.
Black food co-ops are springing up across the nation. Learn more about them and the work of the start-up Central Brooklyn Food Coop.
Former NESAWG staff and longtime food systems advocate Kathy Ruhf reflects on her decades of organizing as part of a series commemorating the 25th anniversary of the It Takes a Region NESAWG conference.
When the House of Representatives’ Farm Bill failed to pass, it was a victory for sustainable ag and food justice advocates, but the story behind its failure is important for all of us working on food system issues.
Mike Weaver is a poultry farmer working to hold Big Ag accountable for its treatment of contract farmers.