COMMENT: USDA Announces More Than $4 Billion to Strengthen Food SystemTue, 08 Jun 2021 16:00:44 CDT
- In response to today’s announcement by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) of plans to invest more than $4 billion to strengthen critical supply chains through the Build Back Better initiative, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) issued the following comment:
"NSAC applauds the USDA’s commitment to investing more than $4 billion to strengthen our food system, improve access to local processing, invest in regional distribution and aggregation, and support new market opportunities that will help producers earn a fairer price for what they grow. The pandemic laid bare the significant challenges facing small- and medium-sized producers and processors up and down the supply chain. This significant funding should be used to address the fundamental causes so that the Administration can follow through on their promise to ‘build back better’ and create a more resilient, just, and equitable food system. NSAC members look forward to working with USDA to ensure that they do.” - Eric Deeble, NSAC Policy Director
"The priorities in today’s announcement are a step in the right direction to bolster the economy in the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic while also helping to create a more resilient and inclusive food system. NSAC believes that USDA’s commitment to a holistic Build Back Better initiative will ensure a more robust food supply is accessible to consumers. NSAC is pleased to see that the initiative’s funding will include a mix of grants, loans, and financing mechanisms for a range of priorities including food production, processing, food distribution and aggregation, as well as for markets and consumers.
NSAC looks forward to learning more details on the proposed program, along with the $1 billion announced last week to purchase healthy food for food insecure Americans and to strengthen food bank capacity. The commitment of more than $5 billion is testament to the Biden-Harris Administration’s stated commitment to transforming the food system by focusing on local and regional production, fairer markets, and improved access to safe, healthy, and nutritious food in all communities.”
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