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USDA offering $2Million to boost urban agriculture, reduce food waste

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Crosby said project applications are to be submitted by July 16.

By Ben Nuelle


The Department of Agriculture is aiming to improve urban food production by providing $2 million to local governments who host pilot projects focusing on composting and reducing food waste.

The money is being made available through USDA’s Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovation Production to communities who host Community Compost and Food Waste Reduction pilot projects. This program is in its second year and was formalized in the 2018 farm bill.

“Priorities will be given to projects that include economic benefits providing compost to farmers. It also integrates other food waste strategies, including food recoveries,” Terry Crosby, acting chief of USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, told Agri-Pulse.

The projects must run two years with a start date of Sep. 25, 2021 and end date of Sep. 25, 2023, according to USDA. Crosby said last year, the department distributed roughly $1 million for 13 projects and hopes to increase the number this year.

“We’re looking for great projects, so whatever that cost is we’ll spend that $2 million and hope to do a few more,” he said.

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