Christmas Edition Newsletter Image
In This Issue
2013 Farm Opportunities Day Conference January 26
Culinary & Heritage Tourism: An Innovative Practices Colloquium February 1-2
SAGE (Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurs) Accepting Applications Deadline December 31
WV Sustainable Communities 2013 Mini-Grant Applications Now Available
Sodexo Foundation Youth Grants Deadline January 31
Institute for Rural America's Seize the Moment Grants
USDA's Food Environment Atlas
Planning for Food Access and Community-Based Food Systems

The mission of the West Virginia food and Farm Coalition is to build, support and strengthen a statewide network of the many kinds of people involved in developing West Virginia's local food economies, with the intertwined goals of improving access to healthy, locally-produced food for all West Virginians and helping to viable food and farm businesses to grow.  The Coalition was launched in 2010 by the West Virginia Community Development Hub with funding from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation.


We believe that as West Virginia farmers and food producers become more directly connected to West Virginia consumers, the results include healthier people, greater business opportunities, stronger communities, and a unique economy reflecting our state's proud heritage of self-sufficient food production.


The Coalition is guided by a 14-person Steering and Transition Committee which is helping to determine its future as an organization and to develop a more permanent, participatory leadership structure.


The West Virginia Community
Development Hub
is a statewide non-profit organization with the mission of engaging communities and providers in an intentional, aligned and continuous system of community development.
Join WVFFC's Mailing List!

Like us on Facebook


This newsletter provides a biweekly selection of news, events, resources, and ideas that are helpful to farms and food access projects in West Virginia.  Whether you are a producer, consumer, nonprofit organization, educator, agency or food-related business, there may be something here to help you with your work.  The information in this newsletter is compiled by the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition, which is an initiative of the West Virginia Community Development Hub.  In addition to this newsletter, we also offer updates on specific food and farm topics.  To subscribe to special updates, go here and enter your email address.




West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition News

West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition seeks Program Coordinator

The West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition is seeking a Program Coordinator to help develop, organize and sustain the rapidly expanding work of the Coalition.  This position, though currently part-time, is designed to enable the right person to grow into a long-term core staff role in the Coalition.  The Program Coordinator's main responsibilities will be to support the Coalition's Food and Farm Working Groups, facilitate its transition into a 501c3 nonprofit corporation, and support other ongoing activities such as partnership development, communications, event organizing, and policy work. Click here for details.

December 24 Deadline to Apply to Value Chain Cluster Initiative Positions

Natural Capital Investment Fund is accepting candidates for five contracted positions with its Value Chain Cluster Initiative: Two part time Regional Coordinators, two part time Business Coaches, and one full time Technical Assistance Coordinator.  Learn more about these positions here

Value Chain Cluster Initiative in the news
WVFFC Program Director Savanna Lyons, during an interview about the new Value Chain Cluster Initiative, says she hopes the program will make it safer for local farmers to try new things, innovate and experiment with less conventional business strategies.  The Fayette Tribune reports here.

National Food News  

Farm Bill news

Leaders of the Senate and House Agriculture Committees met for the past two weeks, trying to agree on a farm bill that would bypass both the House Floor and a House-Senate Conference Committee.  It is unclear what will happen, but some of the most important farm safety net reforms in the Senate-passed bill have some indication of being cut or watered down.  The National Sustainable Agriculture Coaltion says that no bill is better than a bad bill.  Read more of their analysis here
Upcoming Events in and near West Virginia
Do you have events that you want included in our newsletter?
 Please contact us
2013 Farm Opportunities Day Conference     

Saturday, January 26, 2013 9am-4:30pm 

Glenville State College's Mollohan Community Center

Glenville, WV 


This conference, hosted by WVU Extension Service, highlights market demand and enterprise expansion opportunities for farmers of small farms in central West Virginia.  Make the most of your farm and resources by receiving trusted research and advice from state and local experts as part of a one-day, intensive farm opportunities training.  Training is targeted to help new and existing farmers maximize their business' potential and profits.  Participants can learn best practices for meeting market demand. Industry leaders will be on-hand to network with farm producers throughout the day and during a structured resource fair.  Learn more here
Culinary & Heritage Tourism:  An Innovative Practices Colloquium
February 1-2, 2013
Greenbrier Resort 


This Colloquium, hosted by the Collaborative for a 21st Century Appalachia is a two-day event for those interested in developing culinary and cultural heritage tourism opportunities in their communities.  The event features the Cast Iron Cook-Off, a Unique Multi-State Culinary Competition.  The Colloquium will also include presentations on topics such as How to Build a Community Brand, Heritage Tourism, Art and Artists as Economic Drivers, and Showcasing Your Farmers Markets Attracts Tourists.  Space is limited.  Learn more and register here.  
(grants, awards, partnership ideas)

* Find a full grants calendar here, on our website!

To use this calendar, scroll ahead to see what grant deadlines are coming up.  Also look back to see what grants came out last year, so you can anticipate the same grants coming out in the year ahead. 

 SAGE (Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurs) Accepting Applications for Inaugural Class 

 Deadline: December 31, 2012    


SAGE (Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurs) on the West Side of Charleston is taking applications to participate in its inaugural class. SAGE is an economic development initiative to teach people how to grow food and how it can be an economic opportunity. SAGE participants will take part in 12 agriculture courses and 6 entrepreneur courses. They will finish the year long curriculum with an agriculture business license and the skills necessary to cultivate agriculture products.  Learn more here.

 WV Sustainable Communities 2013 Mini-Grant Application Packets Now Available  


WV Sustainable Communities is now accepting grant proposals for their technical assistance mini-grant program.  To learn more about their evaluation process and how to submit a proposal, contact Jamie Lyn Durant at or (304)734-6710, to request an application packet.  

 Sodexo Foundation Youth Grants 

 Deadline: January 31, 2012 


More than 16 million children live in food insecure homes, not always sure where their next meal will come from.  That's why YSA and Sodexo Foundation are calling on young people to "take hunger personally" and join the fight to end childhood hunger.  Sodexo Foundation Youth Grants of $500 grants are available for youth-led service projects that bring together young people, families, Sodexo employees and other community members to address childhood hunger.  Learn more here

 Institute for Rural America's Seize the Moment Grants 

Deadline: rolling


Seize the Moment offers small grants designed for nonprofits needing to take quick action on issues that arise.  These issues may call for immediate organizing or action that cannot be predicted and are not budgeted.  In some cases it is crucial to act immediately to address the issue and take advantage of an organizing or teaching opportunity.  Maximum grant is $250.  Learn more here.  

Food for Thought
(fruitful reading, research & case studies)

USDA's Food Environment Atlas      


Food environment factors--such as store/restaurant proximity, food prices, food and nutrition assistance programs, and community characteristics--interact to influence food choices and diet quality.  The objectives of the USDA Economic Research Service's Food Environment Atlas are: to assemble statistics on food environment indicators to stimulate research on the determinants of food choices and diet quality; to provide a spatial overview of a community's ability to access healthy food and its success in doing so.  Explore the Atlas here. 

"Planning for Food Access and Community-Based Food Systems: A National Scan and Evaluation of Local Comprehensive and Sustainability Plans"     


Disparities in food access are influenced by geographic, economic, and social factors, but also by a community's food production, processing, distribution, consumption, and waste recovery policies and practices.  Food access is not simply a health issue but also a community development and equity issue.  For this reason, access to healthy, affordable, and culturally appropriate food is a key component not only in a healthy, sustainable local food system, but also in a healthy, sustainable community.  Read the American Planning Association's report here about how local governments have created plans to address these issues.  

This is YOUR space, YOUR newsletter and YOUR Coalition. If you have suggestions, announcements or resources you would like to share please contact us.
If you received this email from someone else, and would like to subscribe to the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition Newsletter, please visit this link to sign up.