Farm Aid Invests in Delaware Valley; Grows Local Good Food Movement

SOMERVILLE, Ma. Farm Aid today announced that it granted $57,000 to organizations that promote family farm agriculture and the good food movement in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Farm Aid's December grants contributed $563,700 to 59 family farm groups across the country to strengthen family farm agriculture and to promote food from family farms. This latest round of Farm Aid grants brings its 2006 grant total to $735,900.

"Farm Aid is proud to support so many creative efforts around the country to expand opportunities for family farmers," said Farm Aid President Willie Nelson. "We're all working together to support good food from family farms."

The funds will support innovative programs that help farm families stay on their land, increase production of family farm food and expand local markets. Funds will also support efforts to increase on-farm renewable energy production, confront the threat of increasing corporate control of agriculture, as well as maintain a hotline and a national resource directory that helps farm families transition to sustainable practices and direct markets, recover from disasters and financial hardships. Included in this grant cycle, Farm Aid provided $53,200 in disaster response to support ongoing rebuilding efforts, helping farm families recover from last year's devastating hurricanes along the Gulf Coast.

Much of the money granted by Farm Aid this year was the result of its annual benefit concert, Farm Aid 2006 Presented by Silk Soymilk, which was held September 30 at the Tweeter Center at the Waterfront in Camden, NJ.

To learn more about Farm Aid and to see the full list of 2006 grantees, visit its web site at www.farmaid.org or call 1-800-FARM-AID.

Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert in 1985 to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001. Farm Aid raises awareness about the critical role of family farms and has raised more than $30 million to build and strengthen family farm food production. Between 1985 and 2005, 80 percent of Farm Aid's total expenditures was spent on programs to benefit family farmers, exceeding charity watchdog standards. Through public education, program activities and grants, Farm Aid promotes food from family farms and sustainable agriculture, fights factory farms, advocates for fair farm prices and provides disaster assistance and credit counseling to farm families.

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