As Iowans we are no strangers to agriculture, but many of us may not know where the food on our plates actually comes from. As part of the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food (KYF) initiative, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) is reestablishing the link between producer and consumer. By assisting local and regional food producers with loans for anything from infrastructure development to marketing, the USDA KYF program is promoting the health of individuals and of local economies.
Recently the USDA published an interactive map highlighting the agency's promotion of local agricultural connections. To better inform anyone interested in local production this map shows projects and programs supported in your area. One the most impressive aspects of the map is the number of "Seasonal High Tunnels" funded by USDA loans all over the state. These structures help prolong the Iowa growing season to bring people like you fresh local produce.
Check out the map and see if you can find a local producer who might be putting food on your table this growing season.