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Field to Market Awarded Up to $70 Million in USDA Funding for Climate-Smart Agriculture Innovative Finance Initiatives

Field to Market Awarded Up to $70 Million in USDA Funding for Climate-Smart Agriculture Innovative Finance Initiatives

Published 09-14-22

Submitted by Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture

Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture™ has been awarded funding from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) through the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities opportunity with an approximate funding ceiling of $70 million. The organization will work closely with USDA in the coming weeks to finalize the grant’s overall scope.

Field to Market’s project centers around the Climate-Smart Agriculture Innovative Finance Initiative (the Initiative), which will use innovative finance mechanisms to accelerate climate-smart practice uptake by farmers, leveraging private sector demand to strengthen markets for climate-smart commodities.

The Initiative builds upon the work of Field to Market’s Innovative Finance Committee, which published the report Financial Innovations to Accelerate Sustainable Agriculture: Blueprints for the Value Chain earlier this year.

“The transition to climate-smart agricultural practices is a journey that many farmers cannot undertake alone,” said Field to Market President Scott Herndon. “We are incredibly grateful to be selected as a recipient of this funding, as it allows us to increase the availability of innovative strategies that reduce the financial and agronomic risks for farmers in adopting climate-smart practices.”

With its funding proposal, Field to Market received 72 letters of support from organizations across the agricultural value chain and from each of Field to Market’s membership sectors, with project partners committing to contribute up to $137 million in matching funds. These partnerships will provide technical assistance and additional financial incentives to participating producers, tying climate-smart practices to commodity purchases, and creating a scalable model for private sector investment.

“Field to Market continues to serve as the leading organization uniting the entire agricultural value chain around sustainability. This grant will supercharge our ability to support farmers and increase the adoption of climate-smart agriculture practices on millions of acres,” said Herndon.

“The many partners in this initiative are committed to deploying innovative financial solutions by bringing together the agriculture value chain and finance sector, generating lasting benefits for the climate and farmer livelihoods,” said Maggie Monast, co-chair of the Innovative Finance Committee and Senior Director of Climate-Smart Agriculture at the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).

A portion of the awarded funds will specifically support Black and Native producers, assisting historically underserved producers in adopting climate-smart practices through key partnerships with the Federation of Southern Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund, the Intertribal Agriculture Council and Akiptan.

Other major project partners include PepsiCo, Farmers Business Network, EDF, Archer Daniels Midland, the Illinois Corn Growers Association, Precision Conservation Management, Nutrien Ag Solutions, Growers Edge, Mondelēz, Michigan State University, Coop Elevator and the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability.

“By pairing innovative finance incentives with comprehensive technical assistance, The Initiative will unite the agriculture value chain and drive monumental change in the production and marketing of climate-smart commodities,” said Field to Market Board Chair Brandon Hunnicutt. “We’re grateful that the USDA has selected our Initiative for this enormous opportunity and we look forward to working with our partners to accelerate change within our sector.”

Field to Market was named in five additional projects selected for the first round of funding and looks forward to further enhancing climate-smart agriculture through these partnerships:

  • Strengthening Grassroots Leadership and Capacity to Scale Climate-Smart Production Systems and Facilitate Underserved Producers' Access to Markets, led by the National Association of Conservation Districts;
  • ADM and Partners' Climate-Smart Solutions, led by Archer-Daniels-Midland Company;
  • Rice Stewardship Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities, led by the USA Rice Federation;
  • National Sorghum Producers Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities Project, led by the National Sorghum Producers Association; and
  • Alliance to Catalyze Transition Incentives through Open Networks for Climate-Smart Agriculture, led by The Wolfe’s Neck Farm Foundation, Inc.

ABOUT FIELD TO MARKET
Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture™ brings together a diverse group of grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, feed, beverage, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities and public sector partners to focus on defining, measuring and advancing the sustainability of food, feed, fiber and fuel production. Field to Market is comprised of over 160 members representing all facets of the U.S. agricultural supply chain, with members employing more than 5 million people and representing combined revenues totaling over $1.5 trillion.

CONTACT
Katrina Stacey, Communications Manager, kstacey@fieldtomarket.org, (202) 230-3861

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Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture

Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture

Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture is a leading multi-stakeholder initiative working to unite the agricultural supply chain in defining, measuring and advancing the sustainability of food, fiber and fuel production in the United States. We bring together a diverse group of grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, beverage, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities; and public sector partners to create opportunities across the agricultural supply chain for continuous improvements in productivity, environmental quality, and human well-being. With the world population estimated to exceed 9 billion by 2050, the entire value chain must work together to efficiently and responsibly lay the groundwork for a more sustainable future. From the farm gate to the retail and restaurant counter, the challenge of producing enough food, fiber and fuel for a rapidly growing population—while conserving our planet’s natural resources—has become increasingly complex. The nature of this challenge requires an unparalleled level of transparency and collaboration. By uniting the agricultural supply chain and key stakeholders around a common measurement framework, Field to Market seeks to drive continuous improvement in the sustainability of commodity crop production.

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