[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 105 (Wednesday, June 1, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 31571-31573]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-13483]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Agricultural Marketing Service

[Document Number AMS-TM-11-0008; TM-11-01]


Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA) Inviting Applications for the 
2011 Farmers' Market Promotion Program (FMPP)

AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) announces the 
availability of approximately $10 million in competitive grant funds 
for fiscal year (FY) 2011 to increase domestic consumption of 
agricultural commodities by expanding direct producer-to-consumer 
market opportunities. Examples of direct producer-to-consumer market 
opportunities include new farmers markets, roadside stands, community-
supported agriculture (CSA) programs, agri-tourism activities, and 
other direct producer-to-consumer infrastructure. AMS hereby requests 
proposals from eligible entities within the following categories: 
agricultural cooperatives, producer networks, producer associations, 
local governments, nonprofit corporations, public benefit corporations, 
economic development corporations, regional farmers market authorities, 
and Tribal governments. The minimum award per grant is $5,000 and the 
maximum award per grant is $100,000. No matching funds are required.

DATES: Applications should be received at the address below and must be 
delivered not later than July 1, 2011. Applications received after the 
deadline will not be considered.

ADDRESSES: Submit proposals and other required materials to the 2011 
Farmers' Market Promotion Program (FMPP) Grant Program, Agricultural 
Marketing Service, USDA, Room 4004-South Building, 1400 Independence 
Avenue, SW., Washington, DC, 20250-0269, phone 202-720-8317.
    For hard-copy (paper) submissions, all forms, narratives, letters 
of support, and other required materials must be forwarded in one 
application package. AMS will not accept application packages by e-
mail; electronic applications will be accepted only if submitted via 
http://www.Grants.gov. AMS strongly recommends that each applicant 
visit the AMS Web site at http://www.ams.usda.gov/FMPP to review a copy 
of the 2011 FMPP Guidelines and application instructions to assist in 
preparing the proposal narrative and application.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Carmen Humphrey, Branch Chief, 
Marketing Grants and Technical Services Branch, Marketing Services 
Division, Transportation and Marketing Programs, AMS, USDA, on 202-720-
8317, or via facsimile on 202-690-0031. State that your request for 
information refers to Document No. AMS-TM-11-0008.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This solicitation is issued pursuant to 
Section 6 of the Farmer-to-Consumer Direct Marketing Act of 1976 (7 
U.S.C. 3001-3006) as amended by Section 10605 of the Farm Security and 
Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Pub. L. 107-171) authorizing the 
establishment of the Farmers' Market Promotion Program (7 U.S.C. 3005) 
(FMPP) and as amended by section 10106 of the Food, Conservation and 
Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246). The amended act states that the 
purposes of the FMPP are ``(A) to increase domestic consumption of 
agricultural commodities by improving and expanding, or assisting in 
the improvement and expansion of domestic farmers markets, roadside 
stands, community-supported agriculture programs, agri-tourism 
activities and other direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities; 
and (B) to develop, or aid in the development of new farmers markets, 
roadside stands, community-supported agriculture programs, agri-tourism 
activities, and other direct producer-to-consumer marketing 
opportunities.''
    Detailed program guidelines may be obtained at http://www.ams.usda.gov/FMPP or from the contact listed above. In accordance 
with the Secretary's Statement of Policy (36 FR 13804), it is found and 
determined upon good cause that it is impracticable, unnecessary, and 
contrary to the public's interest to engage in further public 
participation under 5 U.S.C 553 because the applications for the FMPP 
need to be made available as soon as possible as the program season 
approaches.

Background

    AMS will grant awards for projects that continue developing, 
promoting, and expanding direct marketing of agricultural commodities 
from farmers to consumers. Eligible FMPP proposals should support 
marketing entities where agricultural farmers or vendors sell their own 
products directly to consumers, and the sales of these farm products 
should represent the core business of the entity.
    All eligible entities shall be domestic entities; i.e., those 
owned, operated, and located within one or more of the 50 United States 
and the District of Columbia only. Entities located within U.S. 
territories are not eligible.
    Additionally, under this program eligible entities must apply for 
FMPP funds on behalf of direct marketing operators that include two or 
more agricultural farmers/vendors that produce and sell their own 
products through a common distribution channel. Individual agricultural 
producers and sole proprietors, including farmers and farmers market 
vendors, roadside stand operators, community-supported agriculture 
participants, and other individual direct marketers are not eligible 
for FMPP funds.
    FMPP grant funds must be applied to the specific programs and 
objectives identified in the application. Proprietary projects and 
projects that benefit one agricultural producer or individual will not 
be considered.
    In a coordinated effort to eliminate food deserts in urban and 
rural areas in the United States with limited access to affordable, 
nutritious, and healthy food, AMS in coordination with other USDA, 
Treasury, and Health and Human Services grantors will give funding 
priority to the development of healthy food retail outlets in food 
deserts (areas with limited access to affordable and nutritious food, 
particularly areas composed of predominantly lower-income neighborhoods 
and communities). USDA, Treasury and Health and Human Services seek to 
increase access to ``healthy foods'' which include whole foods such as 
fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fat free or low-fat dairy, and lean 
meats that are perishable (fresh, refrigerated, or frozen) or canned as 
well as nutrient-dense foods and beverages encouraged by the 2010 
Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
    Under FMPP, healthy food retail outlets will include producer-to-
consumer marketing outlets that sell healthy foods including, but not 
limited to, farmers markets, CSAs, and road-side stands. A healthy food 
retail outlet might also be an existing producer-to-consumer market 
that upgrades to offer a full range of healthy food choices, 
particularly fresh fruits and vegetables in underserved areas.
    AMS will give FMPP funding priority to measurable, outcome-based, 
and output-based projects that focus on developing healthy food direct-
marketing outlets in food deserts. These projects must improve food 
access by developing new marketing outlets that sell healthy foods in 
food desert communities; or improving infrastructure and distribution 
(transportation, processing, storage, and other equipment) for healthy 
foods in food desert communities.
    These projects will receive additional points under FMPP if in 
addition to meeting all the other established criteria for FMPP 
projects, the project is located in one of the USDA-identified food 
desert census tracts or a low-income area (with at least a 20 percent 
poverty rate). For additional information, see the 2011 FMPP Guidelines 
at http://www.ams.usda.gov/FMPP.
    Not less than 10 percent of the total available funds will be used 
to support

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the use of new electronic benefits transfer (EBT) for Federal nutrition 
programs at farmers markets. To be considered within the 10 percent 
allotment of funds for EBT, the application narrative must clearly 
designate the applicant's intent to compete for FMPP funds as a new EBT 
project. FMPP funds shall be provided to successful proposals that 
demonstrate a plan to continue to provide EBT card access at one or 
more farmers markets following the receipt of the grant.
    When an applicant has multiple project ideas, AMS requires that 
similar proposals be submitted in the application package. Due to the 
legislative mandate, the Agency differentiates projects as EBT-related 
or non EBT-related submissions. As such, all non-EBT project ideas must 
be submitted in one application and all new or existing EBT-related 
projects submitted in a second, distinctly separate application. 
Failure to comply with this requirement will result in the rejection of 
the application. See the 2011 FMPP Guidelines at http://www.ams.usda.gov/FMPP for instructions for multiple application 
submissions.
    While there is no limit to the number of applications that may be 
submitted, AMS will only award an organization one grant in a funding 
year. Awardees from the FY 2010 grant program will not be considered 
for FMPP funding in FY 2011.
    FMPP reserves the right to reject an application that is incomplete 
or does not follow the application requirements; i.e., hand-written or 
in excess of the required page limitation. Application packages without 
required information will not be considered. FMPP's award decisions are 
final.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, (44 U.S.C. 
Chapter 35), the FMPP information collection was previously approved by 
OMB and was assigned OMB control number 0581-0235.
    AMS is committed to compliance with the Government Paperwork 
Elimination Act (GPEA) that requires Government agencies in general to 
provide the public the option of submitting information or transacting 
business electronically to the maximum extent possible.

How To Submit Proposals and Applications

    Each applicant must follow the application preparation and 
submission instructions provided within the 2011 FMPP Guidelines at 
http://www.ams.usda.gov/FMPP. Electronic forms, proposals, letters of 
support, or any other application materials e-mailed directly to AMS-
FMPP or USDA-AMS staff will not be accepted.
    Following are the options available for submitting proposals and 
applications to AMS:
    Paper Submissions--An original and one copy of the proposal, 
required forms, narrative, letters of support, and all required 
materials must be submitted in one package, preferably via express 
mail.
    Electronic Submissions via Grants.gov--Applicants may apply 
electronically for grants through Grants.gov at http://www.Grants.gov 
(insert 10.168 in grant search field) and are strongly encouraged to 
initiate the electronic submission process at least two weeks prior to 
the application deadline. Grants.gov applicants who submit their FMPP 
proposals via this Federal grants web site are not required to submit 
any paper documents to FMPP.
    FMPP is listed in the ``Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance'' 
under number 10.168. Subject agencies, including FMPP, must adhere to 
Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which bars discrimination in 
all federally assisted programs.

    Dated: May 24, 2011.
Rayne Pegg,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2011-13483 Filed 5-31-11; 8:45 am]
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