Press Releases

Larsen Announces Nearly $500,000 Grant Headed to Burlington’s Viva Farms

Washington, DC, August 7, 2017
Congressman met with Viva Farms, anti-hunger advocates in June, and toured Viva last month

SKAGIT COUNTY, WA—Rep. Rick Larsen (WA-02) today announced that Viva Farms in Burlington has been awarded a $488,758 Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive Grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. This program supports projects aimed at increasing the purchase of fruits and vegetables among low-income individuals and families that participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

"By giving farmers tools for success, Viva Farms is helping feed Washingtonians with healthy, locally grown food,” said Larsen, “and the resources announced today will spur efforts to create sustainable solutions to hunger.”

"It just makes sense for the USDA to invest and connect the produce from local family farms to local consumers who need food assistance,” said Michael Frazier, Executive Director of Viva Farms. “This will help ensure the viability of family farms, while at the same time creating access to healthy food for low income families in our community."

One in seven Washingtonians rely on the SNAP program, which is facing major budget cuts proposed by the Trump administration.                   

In June, Larsen held a roundtable with anti-hunger advocates, including representatives from Viva Farms, to discuss how President Trump’s FY 2018 budget proposal could impact Skagit County anti-hunger programs. Last month, Larsen toured Viva to learn more about its incubator program, which helps new farmers learn how to farm and experienced farmers launch businesses by sharing resources such as education, training, equipment, technical assistance, capital, land, and markets.

Click HERE for photos of Larsen’s July tour of Viva Farms.

Viva Farms was established in 2009 to help new farmers launch and grow businesses by providing agricultural and business support.