Bruce Rauner, Governor

State Links Skip to Content Skip to State Links

 Health & Safety
 Family & Home
 About Illinois

Stay Informed

Your Government

Illinois Flag Honors

Inspector General

 IGNN: State/All Press Release

The State of Illinois News page provides access to the Illinois Government News Network and all state press releases.

October 19, 2011

Lt. Governor Simon announces winners of USDA farmers market grant
Funding will help expand local food access in Illinois

CARBONDALE – An advocate for rural communities, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon announced today that four grants from the United States Department of Agriculture’s Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) have been awarded to organizations in Illinois.

“This funding will help local food producers grow their operations and provide greater access to local foods,” said Simon, the only constitutional officer from Southern Illinois. “Expanding local foods in Illinois is good for the health of our citizens and our economy.”

The FMPP provides grants to projects that help improve and expand farmers markets, roadside stands, community-supported agriculture programs, agri-tourism activities, and other direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities. Priority was given to projects that expanded healthy food choices in food deserts.

Simon chairs the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council (GRAC), which is working to eliminate barriers to local food production in Illinois. The Lt. Governor will host GRAC’s quarterly meeting today from 2 to 4 p.m. at John A. Logan College in Carterville.

Simon promoted the availability of FMPP funding and wrote a letter of support on behalf of the Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees, helping secure $81,058 to establish a Farmers Market Association that will provide professional development, resources and support for farmers, markets, and communities. This will include development of a farmers market manager training manual and a statewide database to connect farmers to markets.

“Southern Illinois University applauds Lt. Governor Simon for her work and encouragement of the growth and expansion of home grown food markets,” SIU President Glenn Poshard said. “These venues provide nutritional and affordable sources of food and serve as a novel and innovative way to strengthen our rural economies.”

Another Southern Illinois organization, Food Works of Carbondale, was awarded $89,648 to conduct a comprehensive training and mentoring program for 60 new farmers and ranchers in Southern Illinois so that they can establish farmers markets, roadside stands and other direct-marketing venues. Food Works is scheduled to present its plans for the grant at today’s GRAC meeting.

Other winners include:
  • Growing Home Inc., of Chicago, received $79,300 to establish a new farm stand for the sale of vegetables from its urban farm, purchase refrigeration equipment and other marketing supplies, and conduct educational programs.
  • Faith in Place, of Chicago, got $39,270 to help grow its 15 Chicago-area winter farmers markets and support the development of a congregational-supported Community Supported Agriculture program in Champaign.

The FMPP made an investment of over $9.2 million this year and gave out 149 awards in 42 states across the country.


News Categories

 Governor's Office
 Lt. Governor's Office
 Economic Development
 Flag Honors
 Health/Human Services
 Opportunity Returns

News Resources

 Search the News
 IIS Radio News
 RSS News Feeds
 e-News Subscriptions
 Communications Office
 Privacy Statement


Sign up for an e-news subscription
Copyright © 2015 State of Illinois Site Map | Illinois Privacy Info | Kids Privacy | Web Accessibility | Contact Us