Financing Will Help Grocers, Markets and Other Organizations Provide Healthy Food Options to Underserved Communities
Mount Laurel, NJ, – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director Jane Asselta announced today that the Department has partnered with Reinvestment Fund to invest $120,500 to improve access to healthy foods in underserved communities across the rural New Jersey.
The investments are being made through the Healthy Food Financing Initiative (HFFI), which helps bring grocery stores and other healthy food retailers to underserved urban and rural communities.
“Many low-income communities lack adequate, affordable access to healthy food,” stated Asselta. “Today’s announcement will help City Green, a local, non-profit gardening organization support their mission of bringing fresh food to New Jersey families. Investments like this demonstrate the commitment of the Biden-Harris Administration and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to addressing food insecurity.”
Today’s award announcement presented to:
- City Green, a female-led urban farming and gardening non-profit organization in Clifton, NJ working to revitalize urban areas through agriculture and educational programming. With support from HFFI, City Green will expand their mobile market program and local sourcing through enhanced wholesale aggregation facility infrastructure, dry storage, and organizational capacity to do community outreach and engagement.
HFFI provides grants and loans to entities that offer healthy foods in communities that are underserved by grocery stores and other food retailers. The program increases access to healthy foods, provides new market opportunities for farmers and ranchers, stabilizes small and independent retailers, and creates quality jobs and economic opportunity in low-income communities.
Reinvestment Fund serves as the National Fund Manager for USDA. It raises capital; provides financial and technical assistance to regional, state, and local partnerships; and helps fund projects to improve access to fresh, healthy foods in underserved areas.
Today’s announcement builds on Secretary Vilsack’s announcement that USDA is committing an additional $155 million to HFFI that will also be delivered it in partnership with the Reinvestment Fund.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, promoting competition and fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
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