The High Desert Food & Farm Alliance (HDFFA) was recently awarded a Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP) Grant from the United States Department of Agriculture. This highly competitive grant is focused on programs for farmers and ranchers who have been producing for less than ten years and will allow HDFFA to increase their farm and ranch support in Central Oregon. The award will fund programming through August 2023.
Through the BFRDP, HDFFA will provide educational workshops for farmers and ranchers focused on livestock processing, agritourism, understanding local policy and mentorship opportunities. An additional component of the grant is support for Veterans who are new to farming and ranching, which will be implemented in partnership with the Central Oregon Veteran’s Ranch, located near Redmond.
“This grant will allow us to ramp up support for beginning Central Oregon farmers and ranchers who face a multitude of challenges entering the industry. From leasing land to accessing new markets, this grant will allow us to connect farmers and ranchers to the resources they need to succeed in the local food system,” said HDFFA Farm & Ranch Support Manager Annie Nichols. “By partnering with organizations that are also part of our community, we are able to multiply the impact this grant will have and utilize subject matter experts to deliver valuable programming to our farm and ranch partners.”
HDFFA’s Agricultural Support programming works in tandem with their Food Access programming and towards HDFFA’s vision of a prosperous food and farm network with equitable access for all Central Oregonians.
Key program implementation partners in this grant are Oregon State University Extension, the Central Oregon Veterans Ranch, Friends of Family Farmers, Visit Bend and Travel Oregon.