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USDA Partners With Reinvestment Fund to Invest in Iowa to Increase Equitable Access to Healthy Foods

Name
Cecilia Lynch
City
Des Moines
Release Date
Jun 09, 2022

Financing Will Help Nonprofit Field to Family in Iowa City Provide Healthy Food Options to Underserved Communities

DES MOINES, Iowa, June 9, 2022 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director in Iowa Theresa Greenfield announced today that the Department has partnered with Reinvestment Fund to improve access to healthy foods in underserved communities. In Johnson County, Field to Family, a nonprofit local food hub in Iowa City, is receiving a $200,000 investment for soft costs and infrastructure improvements to upgrade and expand their current operations.

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.

“Local and regional food systems are supported by rural communities that are just around the corner from urban centers,” said Director Greenfield. “The Biden-Harris Administration and USDA are committed to ensuring that resources are delivered to these food systems so that producers have an outlet for their sales and people throughout rural Iowa have a way to put wholesome, nutritious foods on their dinner tables.”

Today’s investment in Iowa is part of a larger nationwide announcement which includes investments that will support 133 other projects in rural, urban and Tribal communities in 46 states, Puerto Rico and Washington D.C.

Background

Many low-income communities lack adequate, affordable access to healthy food. 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 in partnership with the Reinvestment Fund.

USDA Rural Development has 11 offices across the state to serve the 1.7 million Iowans living in rural communities and areas. Office locations include a state office in Des Moines, along with area offices in Albia, Atlantic, Humboldt, Indianola, Iowa Falls, Le Mars, Mount Pleasant, Storm Lake, Tipton, and Waverly.

To learn more about investment resources for rural areas in Iowa, call (515) 284-4663 or visit www.rd.usda.gov/ia. If you’d like to subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit our GovDelivery subscriber page.

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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