Regional Food System Partnerships

Grants to USA and territories nonprofits, local and Tribal governments, producers, and cooperatives, partnering with state and regional authorities, IHEs, corporations, and lending institutions to develop food systems. Required registrations may take up to four weeks to complete. The purpose of the RFSP program is to support partnerships that connect public and private resources to plan and develop local or regional food systems. The program focuses on strengthening the viability and resilience of regional food economies through collaboration and coordination. Partnerships that include Limited Resource Entities are strongly encouraged to apply.
The RFSP supports partnerships that connect public and private resources to plan and develop local or regional food systems. The RFSP focuses on building and strengthening local or regional food economy viability and resilience, and this includes pandemic response and recovery.Applicants will work with their partners to catalyze the development of local or regional food systems. Applicants will coordinate efforts within the partnership to set priorities, connect resources and services, and measure progress towards common goals.Partnerships are authorized to:Determine the size and scope of the local or regional food system in which the project’s goals, outreach objectives, and eligible activities are to be carried out.Coordinate with AMS to receive technical assistance; andConduct outreach and education for potential participation in the partnership agreement and eligible activities.Partnerships must bring a variety of financial and technical capabilities, demonstrate experience or readiness to work effectively and collaboratively with public and private entities across sectors, and present innovative, sustainable, and measurable approaches to achieving the project’s goals.Project TypesPlanning and Design: Planning and Design projects support partnerships in the early stages of convening, envisioning, and planning processes for developing local or regional food systems, including for pandemic recovery. Through these processes, partnerships can determine the goals, outreach, objectives, and eligible activities to be carried out in the regional food system, including defining the region’s parameters (economic, geographic, etc.). Specifically, these projects support a food system’s capacity to develop and build community connections (public and private) that allow a region to engage in activities that drive the discovery and promotion of collaboration opportunities within the food system. Emphasis is placed on inclusively seeking public and private collaborators that connect and cultivate regional food economies and diverse non-Federal financial and technical resources.Implementation and Expansion: Implementation and Expansion projects support partnerships building on prior or ongoing efforts within a local or regional food system. Partnerships funded in this track will have already completed most or all the activities discussed above for Planning and Design projects. Applicants should describe how the goals, objectives, and activities in their proposal build on and/or align with previous efforts, clearly engage entities with a shared commitment to the regional food system and maintain a diverse public-private network that enhances food system development.AMS will prioritize applications that:Leverage significant non-Federal financial and technical resources and coordinate with other local, State, Tribal, or national efforts. Any match resources included in the proposal above and beyond the respective match requirement (see section 3.5) may lend support to the proposal.Cover an area that includes communities with areas of concentrated poverty that provide significant opportunities for high impact investment; orHave multiple entities and partners, although such partners need not be based in the partnership’s defined region.

Sub Title
Grants to USA Partnerships Between Public and Private Entities to Develop and Plan Regional and Local Food Systems
Funding Source

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

07/06/21 11:59 PM EDT
Eligibility Criteria

See RFP and/or Grant Guidelines for full eligibility

Pre-proposal Conference

Regional Food System Partnerships (RFSP) Applicant Webinar
Wednesday, June 9, 2021, 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM EST
Learn more about how to apply for RFSP grant funds to support partnerships that connect public and private resources to plan and develop local or regional food systems.
View the Webinar:
Passcode: 5RS^qE07

Webinar Page:

Term of Contract

AMS expects applicants to complete their projects within the required timeframe. It is acceptable to complete a project before the scheduled performance period end date. However, AMS encourages applicants to take the full grant period to allow ample time to complete projects.

Planning & Designing:
– Duration (Months): 24
– Start Date: October 31, 2021
– End Date: October 30, 2023

Implementation & Expansion
– Duration (Months): 36
– Start Date: October 31, 2021
– End Date: October 30, 2024

Estimated Total Program Funding
Number of Grants
Estimated Size of Grant
Award Ceiling: $1,000,000 Award Floor: $100,000 RFSP Planning and Design projects range from $100,000 to $250,000. Implementation and Expansion projects range from $250,000 to $1,000,000.