Boston Receives $25,000 for Urban Agriculture Visioning Project
October 24, 2014
Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the City of Boston’s Office of Food Initiatives announced today the receipt of a $25,000 planning grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP), to support an Urban Agriculture Visioning group, which will build on efforts to align Boston’s diverse urban growing sector, and establish a common goal that meets the needs of all stakeholders.
“Urban Agriculture creates jobs and food access points in Boston’s neighborhoods,” said Mayor Walsh. “Aligning the goals and strategies of all constituents engaged in urban growing will allow us to better leverage resources, and to work more efficiently toward food system resilience in the City of Boston.”
The funds provided by LFPP will support the hire of an independent facilitator, who, over the course of a year, will convene an Urban Agriculture Visioning Group to develop a vision for food production in Boston as a whole.
Since the passing of Article 89 (the City’s first urban agriculture zoning) in December 2013, supporters of urban growing have begun to provide resources, prepare farms, and train farmers to enable small urban farms to succeed in Boston. These supporters come from the public, private, and non-profit sectors, representing growers, processors, and distributors; with a common goal to enable farmer livelihoods, increase food access for low-income constituents, and provide economic and neighborhood development.
These meetings will help all parties to align strategies to achieve these goals, and will include advocates from all sectors of urban growing in the city, including community gardeners, traditional and rooftop farmers, gleaners, edible forest developers, farmers’ market reps, food processors, and interested constituents.