Agriculture in Pennsylvania
Urban Agriculture Infrastructure
With the passage of the 2019-2020 State Budget, Pennsylvania enacted its first comprehensive farm bill package to invest in agriculture across the Commonwealth. Included in the budget was Senator Street’s bill to produce the first ever Urban Agriculture Grant Fund. These grants will build out the infrastructure of urban agriculture by investing in the system, filling gaps, encouraging entities to work together, finding ways to bring operations to a greater scale, overcoming food deserts, and opening opportunities for people to become social entrepreneurs. Senator Street is proud to work with the Department of Agriculture to invest in urban farms and community gardens in our community and across this Commonwealth.
The Urban Agriculture Infrastructure Grant Program (UAI) provides funding in the form of a reimbursement grant to eligible applicants seeking to improve urban agriculture infrastructure in Pennsylvania.
Projects must include improvements to agricultural infrastructure in urban areas and support for community development in the project service area. They may further include improvement or creation of programs that aggregate agricultural products in urban areas and promote the sharing of resources among urban agricultural entities. Grant awards may not be used to cover in-kind contributions or to reimburse wages or salaries of grant recipient staff.
- Municipal Governments
- “Microgrants” for one-time projects or a single entity applicant. Maximum grant amount for these applications is $2,500, not to exceed 50% of project costs. No more than $50,000 of available funds in FY 2020-21 shall be used for microgrants.
- “Collaboration” grants which demonstrate cooperative or regional efforts which share resources, aggregate agricultural products or producers, promote the sharing of resources among agricultural entities, and support community development. These applications should include several partners in a project, and have a maximum grant amount of $50,000, not to exceed 50% of project costs.
The 2020-21 Urban Agriculture Grant Program application period runs from September 13 – October 15, 2021 at 5:00 PM.
Philadelphia, PA − February 3, 2022 − On Monday Senator Sharif Street joined PA Dept. of Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding of the PA Department of Agriculture in awarding a $50,000 grant to LifeLeaf Organic Farms (FarmerJawn Agriculture) one of 23 grant recipients of the 2021-2022 Urban Agriculture Grant Program authored by Street. PA Ag Secretary Russell Redding joined Senator Street and colleagues on a tour of the new farm in Elkins Park that will support urban agriculture efforts of Redefining the Corner Store building a nano-farm, corner store and kitchen/market to serve the local community. “My dad grew up on a farm. He instilled in me the importance of urban agriculture, which is what drove me to create the Urban Agriculture...
Senator Street Announces $15,000 in Childhood Nutrition/Agricultural Grants for Zhang Sah Martial Arts School
PHILADELPHIA – MAY 3, 2021 – Today Senator Sharif Street announced $15,000 in Farm to School Grant Funds for the Zhang Sah Martial Arts school in the Third Senatorial District. Zhang Sah Martial Arts will receive $15,000 for a project to support a school garden built in 2020 and address food access for the student body and local community. Senator Street championed the Pennsylvania Farm Bill Farm to School Grant Program legislation which aims to connect communities with fresh, healthy food and local producers by changing food purchasing and education practices at schools and early childhood education sites. The approved projects provide a variety of agriculture education experiences while providing students with...
PA Senate Democrats Joined by PA Sec. of Ag & Second Lady Gisele Fetterman for Policy Hearing on Food Insecurity in Pennsylvania
Harrisburg – April 30, 2021 - At the request of Pennsylvania State Senators Judy Schwank (D- Berks), Tina Tartaglione (D- Philadelphia), and Sharif Street (D- Philadelphia), the Senate Democratic Policy Committee held a virtual policy hearing to discuss the issue of food insecurity in Pennsylvania. “The pandemic has exposed many issues over the last year, but perhaps most striking of all is the issue of food insecurity,” Schwank said. “I know few of us will forget seeing the long lines of families waiting for food assistance. Today we learned how our local food banks met the extraordinary challenge of feeding our communities and what we need to consider moving forward as the issue of food insecurity is far from solved.” Pennsylvania...
Harrisburg, PA – March 3, 2021 – Senator Street recently joined PA Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding and Frank Sherman, co-managing director for First Light Project to announce $500,000 in Agriculture Grants for small and urban farming. The grant program, authored by Senator Street’s Urban Ag Program legislation in Governor Wolf’s inaugural Farm Bill, is the first comprehensive farm bill package to invest in agriculture across the Commonwealth, and has been integral in fighting food insecurity in communities throughout the pandemic. The program funded twenty-eight projects in 2020, including First Light Project. “Pennsylvania agriculture is integral to our ability to keep food resources flowing during COVID. Food banks and urban...
Harrisburg, PA – The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced today that $30 million is available to help communities restore and protect water quality throughout the commonwealth. “We’ve developed a flexible, multifaceted funding package to help communities around the state meet their targeted priority water quality challenges and improve the health of local streams and rivers for better flood control, drinking water supply, public health, and economic vitality,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell. Funded through the commonwealth’s Growing Greener Plus program, $30 million in grant funding is available to help communities restore and protect water quality by reducing abandoned mine drainage and urban and agricultural...
PHILADELPHIA, PA – July 29, 2019 − Senator Sharif Street (D-Philadelphia) joined Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture Russel Redding to announce the state’s first Urban Agriculture Grant Fund enacted through Senator Street’s Urban Ag legislation in Act 40 of 2019. “There are tremendous opportunities for urban farmers who often turn blight into community gardens providing access to locally sourced fresh food and combatting the food insecurity that plagues many of our communities.” said Senator Street. The Grant program opens August 1, 2019 and closes September 15, 2019 and is the first comprehensive farm bill package to invest in agriculture across the Commonwealth, including the first ever Urban Agriculture Grant Fund. It includes...