Yesterday, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan announced the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative. Secretary Vilsack recorded a video message and he’s asking us to join in the conversation and share our ideas for ways to support local agriculture.

Shortly after the announcement, Deputy Secretary Merrigan announced another initiative that is part of the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food program. The USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) and Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) will join together and create Farm to School Tactical Teams. The purpose of this initiative is to help schools in their transition to purchasing more locally grown food. As part of this initiative, the USDA will make $50 million available to schools to buy local foods.

In the months to come, the USDA will roll out more programs that will be part of their Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative. I’m looking forward to seeing how it all unfolds. In the meantime, take a look at Secretary Vilsack’s video; then head to the USDA’s YouTube page to join in the conversation.

Thumbnail image: newagecrap

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

Know your farmer, know your food
The USDA gives local food, local farmers, and local school children their props