Agricultural producers and food businesses throught nation getting $320M boost from USDA

Jun 15, 2023, 1:30 PM

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is seeding agricultural producers and food businesses with millions of dollars in investment funds to improve markets, create and strengthen jobs, control food prices and improve nutrition, Secretary Tom Vilsack said Thursday.

“We’re here to underscore the important role that local and regional food systems play for American agriculture and farmers, and to announce $320 million of variety of loans and grants which are designed to strengthen the supply chain, to make the food system more resilient and to create a number of opportunities for mid- and small-size operators,” he said.

He spoke during a visit to the Fresh Start Market in Manchester, New Hampshire. The market sells fresh fruits, vegetables and other products grown by immigrant farmers, some of which are distributed via a community-supported agriculture program.

“Thanks to our partnership with federal officials, including Secretary Vilsack’s Department of Agriculture, we’re making significant progress in tackling food insecurity and leading the way in developing new approaches to create more healthy food options in our city,” Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig said.

North Country Growers in New Hampshire is getting a $19.9 million guaranteed loan to build and operate a 20-acre hydroponic greenhouse to grow lettuce and other leafy greens year round, he said. The project hopes to grow 30 million heads of lettuce a year for sale to local grocery stores and restaurants and distribution throught the Northeast.

It will also support 84 jobs.

Other businesses that will benefit from the investments include a meat market and a bison processing facility that will expand production capabilities; a berry processor that will purchase equipment to expand production capacity; and a plant-based yogurt manufacturer and a cold storage facility that will expand sustainable options for consumers.

Strengthening market opportunities has an economic benefit for small- and mid-sized producers, he said.

More market opportunities means more competitive prices.

“And when you create a local and regional food system you are reducing some costs associated with getting that food to consumers,” Vilsack said.

United States News

SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO - DECEMBER 9, 2019: A copy of the record album, 'Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison'...

Associated Press

Record Store Day celebrates indie retail music sellers as they ride vinyl’s popularity wave

Record Store Day, a holiday invented at a gathering of independent record store owners and employees in 2007, will be observed Saturday.

16 minutes ago

Associated Press

Former Arkansas governor, US Sen David Pryor dies at 89

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Former Arkansas governor and U.S. Sen. David Pryor, a Democrat who was one of the state’s most beloved political figures and remained active in public service in the state long after he left office, has died. He was 89. Pryor, who went undercover to investigate nursing homes while a congressman, […]

19 minutes ago

Associated Press

A rabbi serving 30 years to life in his wife’s contract killing has died, prison officials say

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — The New Jersey rabbi serving a decadeslong sentence in a 1994 murder-for-hire plot targeting his wife has died. Fred Neulander, 82, was pronounced dead shortly after 6 p.m. Wednesday at a hospital in Trenton after he was found unresponsive in his cell in the New Jersey State Prison infirmary, news outlets […]

29 minutes ago

Associated Press

Longtime AP journalist, newspaper publisher John Brewer dies at age 76

PORT ANGELES, Wash. (AP) — John Brewer, whose coast-to-coast journalism career spanned 50 years, including nearly two decades at The Associated Press, has died. He was 76. Brewer and his longtime friend Randy Johnson were on their annual fly fishing trip in Montana on Friday when the boat Brewer was in hit a submerged log […]

33 minutes ago

Associated Press

The House is on the brink of approving aid for Ukraine and Israel after months of struggle

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House is starting a series of votes in a rare Saturday session to approve $95 billion in foreign aid for Ukraine, Israel and other U.S. allies, Democrats and Republicans joining together after a grueling monthslong fight over renewed American support for repelling Russia’s invasion. Each segment of the aid package will […]

12 hours ago

Associated Press

The Senate passes a reauthorization of a key US surveillance program just after a midnight deadline

WASHINGTON (AP) — Barely missing its midnight deadline, the Senate voted early Saturday to reauthorize a key U.S. surveillance law after divisions over whether the FBI should be restricted from using the program to search for Americans’ data nearly forced the statute to lapse. The legislation approved 60-34 with bipartisan support would extend for two […]

12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles



Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.


Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.


Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Agricultural producers and food businesses throught nation getting $320M boost from USDA