Specialty Crop Block Grant Program
The bill would expand the purpose of the Specialty Crop Block Grant program to include the consumption and availability of local/regional specialty crops, the profitability and ecological sustainability of specialty crops, and the affordability of specialty crops for low-income consumers.
National Organic Certification Cost Share Program
The legislation includes a provision to streamline and renew funding for national organic certification cost share to assist organic producers with the annual regulatory costs of producing certified organic products.
Assistance to Small and Very Small Meat and Poultry Processors
The bill improves market access for local and regional livestock and poultry producers by enhancing USDA's technical assistance and guidance to such facilities. It also helps farmers, ranchers, and small local processors by providing greater public information from USDA on approved meat labels.
NSAC's Hoefner added that the bill is a "tiny" investment for a big payoff.
"For an investment of just over $100 million a year, the Local Farms, Food, and Jobs Act can help a growing sector of the food system flourish," Hoefner said. "This investment is tiny in overall farm bill terms – roughly one-tenth of one percent of total farm bill spending – but big in its power to deliver real, lasting, and market-based benefits to farmers, consumers, and communities."