The John Merck Fund

2014 Regional Food Systems Grants

2014  |  2013  |  2012  |  2011  |  2010  |  2003

Food Systems

Center for an Agricultural Economy$20,000

To provide Vermont food entrepreneurs with timely access to critical equipment and creative financing.

End Hunger Connecticut$9,000

To provide administrative support for the Connecticut Food Policy Council.

Fair Food Network$37,500

To channel the growing demand for regionally and sustainably produced food among large institutional food purchasers and build a more just and sustainable food system to provide access to healthy, fresh, and sustainably grown food, especially in underserved communities.

Farm Fresh Rhode Island$25,000

To test market frozen and lightly processed produce from local farms to area institutions, including schools, preschools/daycares, hospitals, universities, and senior meal sites.

Farm-to-Institution New England (Franklin County Community Development Corporation)$200,000

To promote regional coordination along the institutional value chainóamong producers, food hubs, midscale processors, traditional and new distribution channels, procurement officials, and institutional and governmental decisionmakersóin order to increase the share of the regionís institutional market that New England farms and food producers serve.

Good Shepherd Food-Bank$25,000

To purchase nutritious food items from Maine producers, making more fresh, local food available for hungry and food-insecure residents and creating new revenue sources for Maine farmers and food producers.

Health Care Without Harm$100,000

To build a cadre of hospitals and other health care organizations in New England that are committed to serving healthier, fresher, and more locally-sourced food in patient meals and in the cafeterias that serve employees and the visiting public.

Land for Good$50,000

To lead multi-stakeholder efforts to improve public policies regarding rural and urban farmland access in the six New England states and key metropolitan areas.

Land for Good$33,000

To increase farmland access and ownership for beginning and established farmers in New England.

Maine Farmland Trust$50,000

To address key barriers to moving greater volumes of New England produce through conventional supply chains in Maine.

Maine Farmland Trust$50,000

To educate Maine farmers on the benefits and challenges of growing food for the wholesale market.

Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association$65,000

To ensure that Maine farmers and food producers are able to increase production, particularly in Aroostook County, New Englandís largest farming land base, as demand grows for healthy, sustainable, and organic food throughout the region, particularly in southern New England.

Massachusetts Food Policy Expendable Trust$25,000

To create a strategic food system security plan for Massachusetts.

Migrant Justice$40,000

To improve working conditions and wage equity for immigrant dairy workers by building participation in the Milk with Dignity program among farmworkers, dairy farmers, and dairy product companies.

New Hampshire Community Loan Fund$40,000

To lend its finance and business development expertise to farm and food entrepreneurs, investors, and intermediaries in New Hampshire and across New England, with special emphasis on building farm-to-institution channels.

Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group$75,000

To create an open source data system that is useful to a wide range of food system stakeholders while building human and organizational capacity to actively use, contribute to, and shape it.

Real Food Challenge$75,000

To strategically apply tools and tactics to increase the amount of local food served at the regionís more than 370 two- and four-year colleges and universities.

Red Tomato$50,000

To increase institutional sales and participate in a new joint project with Wholesome Wave aimed to significantly increase sales from New England farmers to a national broadline distributor.

Rhode Island Food Policy Council$25,000

To develop and launch an open-source food system database.

Rutland Area Farm and Food Link$6,000

To increase the amount of local, sustainably grown food served at workplaces in Vermont.

Southeastern Massachusetts Livestock Association$15,000

To build a small, state of the art meat processing facility in Westport, Massachusetts.

Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems Funders$5,000

To provide general support.

University of Massachusetts-Amherst$55,000

To support the Wellspring Cooperative Greenhouse's efforts to increase institutional commitment to locally and regionally produced food.

University of New Hampshire Foundation$50,000

To support the release and distribution of the "New England Food Vision" throughout New England.

University of New Hampshire Foundation$50,000

To provide key administrative and coordinating functions for the New Hampshire food strategy design and planning teams, including: facilitating communication among state and regional food planning networks; planning, convening, and facilitating meetings to advance network goals; researching, analyzing, and distributing information critical for food planning; creating an inventory and map of New Hampshire's food system network; and collaborating with other planning teams throughout New England to identify a common set of metrics that measure progress in meeting food systems goals.

University of New Hampshire Foundation$7,775

To host the NASDA annual meeting in New Hampshire, to discuss farm and food issues and decide on priorities for the coming year.

University of New Hampshire Foundation$1,500

To enable food system leaders from Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island to attend the Vermont Farm to Plate Network annual meeting.

University of Southern Maine Muskie School of Public Service$40,000

To continue developing a planning process for the future of Maineís food system, and to connect that process with those underway in the other five New England states and for the region as a whole.

Vermont Housing & Conservation Board$7,500

To identify a digital technology application that will enable Vermontís farmers to trace their produce through the supply chain.

Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund$75,000

To support implementation of elements of the ten-year Farm-to-Plate ten-year strategic plan to develop Vermontís food system, including providing development and training for its member organizations, and conducting communication and outreach to connect with the Vermonters who are still unaware of the health, economic, community, and environmental benefits of supporting the stateís farmers and food producers.

Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund$50,000

To strengthen the businesses and institutions that provide the infrastructure of Vermontís working lands and build the capacity of Vermontís food-based trade associations.

Wholesome Wave$75,000

To strengthen capacity within emerging regional food systems by assisting them with business planning and access to financing that enables scaling up to win contracts with institutional and other larger buyers.

> back to top