EPA Partners With Spring City To Improve Access To New Community Gardens And Farmers Market

  • Wednesday, June 5, 2024
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, in partnership with the Appalachian Regional Commission, announced the selection of Spring City to receive technical assistance through the Local Foods, Local Places program. Together, EPA and the local community will engage with stakeholders to develop local foods systems while furthering sustainability goals.

“EPA is proud to partner with local communities to support local food initiatives that improve access to fresh foods, support and grow new business and protect the environment,” said Acting Region 4 Administrator Jeaneanne Gettle.
“As a public health agency, EPA is committed to addressing the problem of food insecurity in the Southeast that can contribute to poor health in our communities.”

Spring City plans to combine the efforts of several local groups to improve fresh food availability with new community gardens and farmers market access to address priority health challenges such as obesity. The new community gardens will also contribute to downtown revitalization efforts as green infrastructure to mitigate flooding risks and to promote community gathering places. 

“The Town of Spring City is proud to have been selected to be part of the Local Foods, Local Places program,” said City Manager Stephania Motes. “Our focus will be to create a farmers’ market and a community garden to help meet community needs as well as to boost our downtown revitalization efforts and Agri-tourism in the area.”

This year, ARC and EPA will also collaborate with the newly established U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Business Center for Appalachia, which helps underserved farmers and food businesses in the local food supply chain overcome market access barriers. 

Officials said, "Since 2014, the Local Foods, Local Places program has aided 137 communities across the country. The assistance helps community groups, local governments and tribal governments increase their capacity to protect the environment and improve public health through better access to healthy foods and more active lifestyles, thereby improving overall quality of life, especially within overburdened communities. The program emphasizes sustainable food systems and expands economic opportunity, especially for local growers and value-added food processor entrepreneurs."
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