News

Once a niche, local foods becoming big business

Once a niche, local foods becoming big business

FARM FRESH:A growing network of companies and organizations is delivering food directly from local farms to institutions like hospitals and schools, eliminating middlemen from farm to fork. Photo: Associated Press

MARY CLARE JALONICK, Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Locally grown foods aren’t just for farmers markets anymore.

A growing network of companies and organizations is delivering food directly from local farms to institutions like hospitals and schools, eliminating middlemen from farm to fork. They’re increasing profits for smaller farms and bringing consumers healthier foods.

These so-called food hubs have helped transform locally grown foods into a bigger business with more than $25 million in federal aid.

The model is simple. The organizations pick up food from regional farmers and take it directly to city customers, along with detailed information about where it was grown or produced.

Since 2009, the Agriculture Department has upped its commitment to small farms and locally grown food.

It’s a cultural transformation for the agency, which has long been focused on the biggest farms.

Recent Headlines

3 hours ago in Entertainment

Today in entertainment history: Feb. 10

abdul

A look back at the Hollywood headlines that made history.

16 hours ago in Viral Videos

Will Ferrell wants to be the new animal expert on ‘The Late Show’

15-overlay-7

Stephen Colbert's "The Late Show" doesn’t have an animal expert yet, so why shouldn’t it be Will Ferrell?

21 hours ago in Entertainment

The pouting male models are back for ‘Zoolander 2’

25-overlay-1

Derek and Hansel are back.

21 hours ago in Music

Kelly Clarkson teases top-secret new project with adorable daughter

16-overlay-8

It was a mother-daughter version of a "Super Bowl" ad.

21 hours ago in Entertainment

TV producers may start making you wait for new shows online

hulu

Cord-cutters beware: You might have to wait longer for new TV.