Center for Regenerative Agriculture and Resilient Systems

North Valley Food Hub for Climate-Smart Agriculture

The North Valley Food Hub for Climate-Smart Agriculture is now being launched with funds awarded September 30, 2023 by the USDA Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities program via a $5 million grant over five years. The intention of this project is to provide farm-to-fork integration through marketing and sales support for climate-smart commodities (such as but not limited to almonds, walnuts, rice, tomatoes, peaches, and prunes) by creating a one-stop shopping platform for wholesale buyers, and a marketplace for growers to post and promote their products. The program also provides free training, technical support, mentorship, and subsidies for producers to implement climate-smart practices.

Our intention is to engage over 100 local farmers and ranchers in participating in this program, providing them with the tools and support they need to succeed, and a marketplace of interested buyers for the products they produce. Additionally, we estimate this could mean that 3,000 more metric tons of CO2e could be mitigated and sequestered annually from the adoption of climate-smart agricultural practices. That’s the equivalent of the carbon sequestered by 49,605 tree seedlings planted and grown for 10 years.

Learn How to Participate at a Free Informational Webinar

Join us from 12:00pm - 1:30pm on Thursday, March 28, 2024 to learn how you can benefit and participate in this exciting new program for producers and wholesale buyers in Northern California. Click here to learn more and sign up!

Fill Out This Form to Receive Specific Information 

If you would like to be considered for enrollment as either a grower or a buyer or would just like us to contact you about your specific interests in this program, please click here and we'll contact you via your preferred form of communication.

Producers:

  • Get funding and technical support to implement climate-smart agricultural practices.
  • Sell to buyers through an integrated sales and marketing food hub platform.

The hub works to expand markets for the climate-smart commodities produced through marketing assistance, and outreach and education to address the challenges of direct/intermediated local food marketing (e.g., food safety and production planning).

Producers will be supported to implement a variety of climate-smart practices such as (but not limited to):

  • cover crops
  • no-till or reduced-till
  • soil amendments
  • crop rotation
  • prescribed grazing
  • hedgerows
  • nutrient management

Direct payments for every year of participation are available for producers implementing these climate smart agricultural practices.  Free access to specialty equipment may also be available and help to lower cost and increase success of implementation.

Producers receive free one-on-one technical service assistance to plan, implement, monitor, and evaluate climate-smart practices, and will share the data collected to support similar initiatives in the future. This will help us assess the economic effectiveness of the choices implemented.

Wholesale Buyers:

  • Find locally produced food from producers in Northern California implementing cutting edge climate-smart practices.

The online marketplace allows buyers to search by both commodity and climate-smart practice. The market manager is able to track demand and communicate that information back through the supply chain to the producers.

Wholesale buyers are helped to better understand the value of supporting climate-smart agricultural practices, and are provided with resources to share with their consumers. 

The Hub serves as a marketplace to develop sales for project producers through local intermediated market channels (such as institutional and foodservice buyers). Additionally, the Hub provides critical services to both growers and wholesale buyers that include consolidating transaction costs, creating a one-stop shopping platform for buyers, and a marketplace for growers to post and promote their products. It serves as a centralized facilitator for creating and expanding a regional food market in the northern California for climate-smart products.

Specific project goals include:

  • Establishing the North Valley Food Hub for Climate-Smart Agriculture focused on training, education and marketing services for small and underserved farmers and ranchers engaging in climate-smart production practices. This will include technical service provider training, online farmer education and networking tools, and on-farm field days.
  • Incentivizing underrepresented growers to use climate-smart production practices and participate in the Hub marketing and distribution through technical support, educational programming, and economic incentives.
  • In addition to modeling the cumulative mitigation of greenhouse gases on acreage managed under climate smart practices, periodic soil sampling and analysis by our own RAD lab will monitor effects on soil carbon and soil health indicators, at no cost to the grower.

  • Developing markets/sales for producers participating in the North Valley Food Hub for Climate-Smart Agriculture through climate-smart product marketing language and strategy.

Fill Out This Form to Receive Specific Information 

If you would like to be considered for enrollment as either a grower or a buyer or would just like us to contact you about your specific interests in this program, please click here and we'll contact you via your preferred form of communication.

Partners include Butte County Farm Bureau; North State Hulling Cooperative, Douglass Ranch; GRUB Farms; Chico State Organic Vegetable Project, and Chico State’s Basic Needs Hungry Wildcat Pantry.

Learn more about the Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities program(opens in new window).

The North Valley Food Hub for Climate-Smart Agriculture is supported by USDA Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities program grant #NR233A750004G110. USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.