Senators Klobuchar, Smith Announce New Regional Food Business Center to Support Farmers in Minnesota

WASHINGTON [5.10.23] – Today, U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith (both D-MN) announced the creation of a new Regional Food Business Center in Minnesota that will help farmers, ranchers, and other food businesses access new markets and navigate federal, state, and local resources. The new center, which will be located in Staples, MN, is made possible by the American Rescue Plan, which Klobuchar and Smith helped pass.

“Our farmers are an essential part of the fabric of our state. We need to make sure they have the necessary resources to continue to feed and fuel the world,” said Klobuchar. “The new Regional Food Business Center will provide critical support to help farmers expand their businesses and reach new markets.”

“Agriculture is the backbone of Minnesota’s diverse economy and I want to make sure our farmers have every opportunity to sell their products and stay competitive,” said Smith. “This new Regional Food Business Center will provide tailored guidance for farmers while helping them grow their business and access new markets. It will be a great resource made possible by the American Rescue Plan and I encourage Minnesota farmers to take advantage of it.”

As part of the American Rescue Plan, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced funding for 12 Regional Food Business Centers, including the North Central location in Staples, MN. The Region Five Development Commission was selected to lead the North Central location, which will serve Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.  The Regional Food Business Centers will act as regional hubs coordinating across geographic areas, federal, state, and tribal agencies and connect businesses to relevant resources, regional commissions, and other Regional Food Centers.

The resources and diverse knowledge offered through the Centers will make USDA programs more accessible to small and mid-sized producers and food and farm businesses.

More information is available on the Regional Food Business Centers Program webpage.