Washington, DC – U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $113,196 in federal funding for Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming, Inc. in Tompkins County. The funding was allocated through the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) and will help provide technical assistance to new farmers to start their farms across the Finger Lakes Region. Specifically, Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming, Inc. will help new farmers access land, equipment, and supplies. It will also train new farmers in business and farm development, and provide them mentoring opportunities. The project is expected to create eight new farming businesses and 16 new jobs.
“Ensuring that Upstate New York agriculture has the federal assistance needed to flourish has always been a top priority of mine,” said Senator Schumer. “With this federal funding, the Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming will be able to support new farms, helping to create good-paying jobs and ensure that New York’s strong agricultural legacy is sustained for the long-term future. I’m proud to announce this federal investment which will grow and cultivate agricultural production in Tompkins County.”
“New York has a proud agricultural tradition that is supported by our hardworking farmers across the state,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This program will help Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming, Inc. train the next generation of farmers and create new farming businesses, which will strengthen the local agricultural economy in the Finger Lakes Region. I will always fight in the Senate to ensure that our farmers have the resources they need to be successful.”
“The timing of the ARC investment could not be more perfect for Groundswell and our Incubator Farm Program. Groundswell just kicked off our 10th year of programming and ARC funding enables us to really invest in additional infrastructure and equipment that the farm training program really needs for its sustainability and longevity. Matched with funding from the Park Foundation and the USDA, this comprehensive Project enables Groundswell to continue addressing challenges of land and resource access – the biggest obstacles farmers face in getting started and running successful businesses. We welcome people to contact us to visit the Incubator Farm or learn more about our work,” said Elizabeth Gabriel, Executive Director, Groundswell Center for Local Food & Farming, Inc.
The funding was allocated through the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). The ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian region. More information can be found here.