Here in Illinois, local farms and food businesses are creating jobs and feeding communities. But there are still missing links in the supply chain that make it hard to connect farmers and communities who want fresh, healthy food.
Good news: a bipartisan bill introduced in Congress this week seeks to connect those missing links! If included in the upcoming 2018 Farm Bill, the Local Food and Regional Market Supply (FARMS) Act will:
- Help farmers reach new markets through outreach, cost-share, and technical assistance programs,
- Increase access to fresh, healthy, local food among low-income groups and communities in need, and
- Develop new and strengthen existing infrastructure that connects producers to consumers.
This bill will support the small and medium-scale farmers that are the backbone of our local and regional food systems and increase access to healthy, local food for families in need.
Congress is already starting to work on the 2018 Farm Bill – the major food and agriculture package that comes around about every 5 years. We want The Local FARMS Act to be a priority for Illinois members of Congress.
Read our press release about the new bill, including our statement from Andy Heck, our Board President:
“Times are tight right now, a farmer has to be a jack of all trades to get by. You’ve got to not only grow the best food, but also have a smart business plan, savvy marketing, the right training. We’re not looking for a handout, we’re looking for a hand up – and that’s what the Local FARMS Act does. This bill gives us an opportunity to reach new markets so that we can make a decent living and keep our farms in business.”
What happens next?
Click here to sign up for ISA’s email action list for opportunities to contact your member of Congress to support the Local FARMS Act.