YOUNGSTOWN, OH – Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation has been chosen as a winner of the Local Foods, Local Places grant award to provide access to healthy, local food for the residents of Youngstown. Local Foods, Local Places provides economic opportunity for local farmers and supports community revitalization through the development of farmers markets, community gardens, and other local food initiatives in easily accessible locations. The Local Foods, Local Places program is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and the Delta Regional Authority (DRA).

“This federal support will help boost the availability of locally grown, fresh food,” Brown said. “Youngstown is a leader in local food enterprises and Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation will continue to help local producers expand their markets, create jobs, and strengthen the economy.”

A representative from Brown’s office attended the national announcement of the award, held at the Common Wealth Kitchen Incubator in Youngstown.              

In 2010, Brown joined the Mahoning Valley Organizing Collaborative, community leaders, and anti-hunger advocates at Neighborhood Ministries in Youngstown to discuss legislative efforts aimed to combat childhood hunger and promote access to nutritious foods in Ohio schools and underserved communities.  Following his meeting, Brown later introduced the Local Farms, Food, and Jobs Act, which he successfully passed in the 2014 Farm Bill. Brown’s bill helps Ohio farmers and ranchers sell their products directly to consumers and creates jobs by addressing production, aggregation, and marketing and distribution needs. It also ensures that consumers have better access to nutritious, locally-grown food. 

Brown is Ohio’s first senator to serve on the Senate Agriculture committee in more than 40 years and was a member of the 2014 Farm Bill Senate conference committee.