RICHMOND, VA—Governor Ralph Northam today announced a new grant program designed to support equitable and sustainable local food systems for small-scale agricultural producers, farmers markets, and food hubs. It is a new component of the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund.
The Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund (AFID) Infrastructure Grant program is designed to support equitable and sustainable local food systems by investing in the infrastructure that supports small-scale agricultural producers, farmers’ markets and food hubs. Drawing from the AFID Fund, the new AFID Infrastructure Grant program competitively awards matching grants of up to $25,000 in partnership with local governments for community infrastructure development projects that support local food production and sustainable agriculture. Special reduced match requirements are available to projects in economically distressed localities or underserved communities and for those benefiting multiple small-scale producers.
Created by Del. Sam Rasoul’s House Bill 2068 during the 2021 General Assembly session, the AFID Infrastructure Program is focused on awarding reimbursable grants primarily for capital projects at new and existing food hubs, farmers’ markets, commercial kitchens and other value-added facilities such as those used for processing and packaging meats, dairy products, produce, or other Virginia-grown products. Small farmers, food producers, local food systems advocates and others interested in building their community’s local food and farming infrastructure are encouraged to learn more about the program and work with their localities to identify and develop suitable projects. The inaugural funding round opens October 1, 2021, with an application deadline of November 15, 2021, and award announcements made no later than December 31, 2021.
A virtual Program Overview and How-to-Apply Workshop is scheduled for Friday, October 8 from 10am-11am – please use this link to join:
(the workshop will be recorded and available for those who could not attend)
Additional information about the Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Infrastructure program is available here.
Questions about the program and upcoming application workshops should be directed to Jennifer.Perkins@vdacs.virginia.gov (804.786.1906).