Program Builds Upon Governor’s State of the State Commitment to Strengthen Resiliency of New York’s Food and Agriculture Sectors
Awarded Projects Will Boost Agricultural Community and Increase Access to Fresh, Local Foods
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that $7.6 million is available to eligible organizations through Round 2 of the New York Food for New York Families (NYFNYF) program. The program, funded through a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) grant, is providing a boost to New York farmers, increasing communities’ access to local foods, and further strengthening New York’s food system. In November 2023, Governor Hochul announced over $40 million had been awarded to 102 food service organizations across the state through Round 1 of the program.
“In my 2024 State of the State, I solidified my commitment to creating a more resilient future for New York’s agriculture and food sectors - continuing the New York Food for New York Families program doubles down on that goal,” Governor Hochul said. “Projects awarded through Round 1 of this transformative program are already helping to bring fresh, local food to families that need it most, while also supporting New York’s farming community. Round 2 of the program is now open for community organizations to apply and the projects that come to fruition will undoubtedly strengthen the system we are building to help our most vulnerable New Yorkers.”
A total of $7.6 million is available for Round 2 projects. Applicants may apply for a minimum of $250,000 and a maximum of $2 million in funding. Awarded projects will support local and traditionally disadvantaged farmers by expanding economic opportunities and creating new marketing channels for them within the state while ensuring local food gets to New York families who need it most.
Examples of projects that may be funded during Round 2 include:
- A not-for-profit may purchase more local food and expand delivery to new communities in food insecure areas,
- A local or municipal government may purchase more local food for facilities in food insecure communities,
- A food bank or pantry may purchase food boxes directly from a farm,
- A community center may initiate a backpack program to send food home with clients, or
- A not-for-profit child-care center serving food insecure communities may purchase more local food for meals and snacks.
Eligible applicants include not-for-profit organizations, agricultural cooperatives, tribal organizations, public educational institutions, and local or municipal governments. Entities that received an award through the first round of funding are not eligible to apply. An informational webinar will be held on January 18 at 3:00 pm. Registration is available online.
Proposals must be received by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets by 3:00 pm local time on February 15, 2024. Applicants should be aware that applications for this round are required to be submitted as a paper application as New York State is currently transitioning from Grants Gateway to the Statewide Financial System (SFS). Applicants are still required to be prequalified in SFS after it goes live on January 16. Interested entities can find out more at grantsmanagement.ny.gov/transition-SFS. Additional information can be found at agriculture.ny.gov/rfp-0325-new-york-food-new-york-families-round-2.
USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Jenny Lester Moffitt said, “New York Food for New York Families, funded through USDA’s Local Food Purchase Assistance Program, is a great example of what state, tribal, and territorial governments can do to strengthen local markets for local food producers, and empower them to support those facing food insecurity within their own communities. We have seen the incredible feedback about the first round of awards with people from Queens to Erie County thankful for receiving quality, extremely fresh dairy products, elderly residents appreciating the needed nutritional boost, and young families grateful to receive healthy foods for their children that may have otherwise been unaffordable. We are truly excited to see what the funding from the second round will accomplish.”
State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “Our New York Food For New York Families program helps local food organizations expand their impact on the farmers they support and provide more high quality, nutritious food to the families they help feed. I’m proud of what this program is accomplishing so far, with over $40 million already awarded to 102 projects across the state already. I look forward to seeing what the Round 2 projects will have in store, and encourage all eligible entities to apply.”
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer said, “With this major federal USDA investment, New York is working to ensure access to fresh, healthy, locally-sourced food at the start of the new year, which will benefit both local farmers and families in need. I helped deliver $40 million for the New York Food for New York Families program benefitting over 100 NY organizations last November and I am proud to deliver over $7 million more here today, which is a win for families, local farmers, and our state-wide food supply chain. This USDA investment empowers Governor Hochul to feed hundreds of thousands and I am committed to fighting for more support like this to keep kids, parents, families, and every person across New York fed.”
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said, “The New York Food for New York Families program helps ensure that New Yorkers have access to healthy, nutritious local food. This $7.6 million in funding will further strengthen New York State’s food supply system, ensuring local food is available to New York families in need, all while supporting local farmers. I am thankful for USDA’s commitment to increasing food security in New York and I will continue to fight to ensure that all New York families have healthy food on their tables.”
In total, AGM has been awarded $49.6 million through the USDA’s Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement (LFPA) Program to implement NYFNYF. The program’s goals are to establish and broaden partnerships between New York farmers/producers, the food distribution community, and local food networks to ensure distribution of fresh nutritious foods in rural, remote, and/or underserved areas; improve food access for underserved communities by considering regional challenges; and support local and traditionally disadvantaged farmers/producers by expanding and creating marketing and economic opportunities.
Building on the NYFNYF and similar programs designed to strengthen the food system in New York, Governor Hochul’s 2024 State of the State lays out a plan for New York’s agricultural industry to become stronger, more resilient, and proactive against future threats spanning the health, environment, labor, and education industries. The Governor announced several major proposals to provide a boost to New York’s dairy and agricultural industries, workforce development programs, and youth leadership and education opportunities, including plans of cross-cutting initiatives that will strengthen the industry and promote a more resilient future for our agriculture, food, and forestry sectors.
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