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USDA To Spend $52 Million To Boost Local, Organic Farmers

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The United States Department of Agriculture has awarded more than $52 million in grants to boost local and organic farmers, in part so consumers have better access to sustainable and healthier food, the agency announced Monday.

The millions will be spent to advertise for local farmers and farmers markets ($27 million), to teach organic farmers how to deal with pests and weeds and maintain organic standards ($19 million), and to figure out how to get food to poor people ($4.8 million).

An additional $1 million will go to classes that give college students a shot at figuring out how to transport and market U.S. food abroad.

Most of this money was authorized by the 2014 farm bill, signed into law by President Obama in February, which tripled USDA funding to local and organic farmers, reported The New York Times.

Mark Kastel, co-founder of an organic research group, is happy with the additional funding. “It’s a really nice bump for us, because we’ve been getting chump change for research,” he told The New York Times.

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