Build Back Better
USDA is investing up to $1 billion, including $500 million in American Rescue Plan funding, in The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) to support and expand the emergency food network so states, food banks and local organizations can reliably serve their communities.
This effort is funded through the American Rescue Plan Act and the Consolidated Appropriations Act and includes:
To Support Emergency Food Assistance
Up to $400 Million
To Support Local, Regional, and Socially Disadvantaged Farmers
Up to $100 Million
In Infrastructure Grants to Build Capacity for Food Banks and Expand Reach into Underserved Areas
Build Back Better News
The Build Back Better Initiative will strengthen and transform critical parts of the U.S. food system.
Strengthening the Food System
Citing lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic and recent supply chain disruptions, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced plans to invest more than $4 billion to strengthen critical supply chains through the Build Back Better initiative. The new effort will strengthen the food system, create new market opportunities, tackle the climate crisis, help communities that have been left behind, and support good-paying jobs throughout the supply chain. Today’s announcement supports the Biden Administration’s broader work on strengthening the resilience of critical supply chains as directed by Executive Order 14017 America's Supply Chains. Funding is provided by the American Rescue Plan Act and earlier pandemic assistance such as the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.
Food production relies on growers, including farmers and ranchers, workers, and critical inputs. But a diminishing share of the food dollar goes to these essential workers.
USDA will invest in the current and future generation of food producers and workers throughout the food system with direct assistance, grants, training and technical assistance, and more.
The pandemic highlighted challenges with consolidated processing capacity. It created supply bottlenecks, which led to a drop in effective plant and slaughter capacity.
Small and midsize farmers often struggled to compete for processing access. USDA will make investments to support new and expanded regional processing capacity.
Food aggregation and distribution relies on people working together throughout the food system and having the right infrastructure to gather, move and hold the food where and when it is needed.
This system was stressed during the pandemic due to long shipping distances and lack of investment in local and regional capacity. USDA will make investments in food system infrastructure that can remain resilient, flexible and responsive.
The U.S. spends more on health care and less on food than any other high-income nation; yet the U.S. has higher rates of diet-related illness and a lower life expectancy than those nations.
At the same time, many socially disadvantaged and small and mid-sized producers do not have equitable access to markets. USDA will support new and expanded access to markets for a diversity of growers while helping eaters access healthy foods.
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We can end hunger, address nutrition insecurity, rebuild the middle class, invest in education, and connect communities to good paying jobs. Let’s not wait anymore, let’s build back better. pic.twitter.com/uFoLquBaBR— Secretary Tom Vilsack (@SecVilsack) June 10, 2021