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Smart Growth

Local Foods, Local Places


See how community members in Williamson, West Virginia, used a health care center and local foods to anchor their downtown redevelopment efforts.
See how community members in Corbin, Kentucky, used local foods to revitalize their downtown, helping to reduce the vacancy rate from 40 percent to 5 percent.

Local Foods, Local Places helps cities and towns across the country protect the environment and human health by engaging with local partners to reinvest in existing neighborhoods as they develop local food systems. The program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), EPA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and the Delta Regional Authority (DRA).

Local Foods, Local Places supports locally led, community-driven efforts to protect air and water quality, preserve open space and farmland, boost economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses, improve access to healthy local food, and promote childhood wellness.

Through Local Foods, Local Places, partner communities have worked on projects such as:

  • Opening year-round, downtown markets featuring foods from local farmers.
  • Planning cooperative grocery stores to help revitalize small-town main streets.
  • Creating centrally located community kitchens or food hubs to aggregate and market local foods.
  • Starting business incubators to help entrepreneurs launch food-related businesses on main streets.
  • Making it easier for people to walk or bicycle to farmers markets and local restaurants.
  • Helping schoolchildren to grow their own food, and making healthy local food accessible to families, including via SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits.
  • Developing community gardens in walkable, transit-accessible places.

In selecting Local Foods, Local Places partner communities, special consideration is given to communities in the early stages of developing local food enterprises and creating economically vibrant communities. Partner communities in Appalachia and the Delta region are eligible to receive financial assistance to help them implement their local food and community revitalization plans.

Local Foods, Local Places builds on the ARC-EPA-USDA Livable Communities in Appalachia partnership, which worked to promote economic development, preserve rural lands, and increase access to locally grown food in Appalachian towns and rural communities.

The 2017-2018 call for applications for planning assistance from Local Foods, Local Places closed on October 25, 2107. The application is available here for reference only.

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Local Foods, Local Places Toolkit

Based on the best practices and lessons learned from Local Foods, Local Places workshops, EPA developed the Local Foods, Local Places Toolkit to help communities interested in using local foods to support downtown and neighborhood revitalization. The toolkit provides step-by-step instructions for planning and hosting a community workshop and includes case studies and templates communities can adapt to their needs.

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Community Stories

Learn about some of the communities that have hosted Local Foods, Local Places workshops.

Story Map

  • See the Community Stories map (link will open in a new window or tab) to learn about how Williamson, West Virginia, used Local Foods, Local Places and other EPA assistance to develop strategies to drive downtown revitalization using local foods and health facilities.


  • Harlan, Kentucky: Listen to this podcast to learn how Harlan's participation in Local Foods, Local Places is helping the town grow its local food economy and revitalize downtown.

Case Studies

Photo Essays From Local Foods, Local Places Workshops

The following links exit the site Exit

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2017 Partner Communities

Local Foods, Local Places is working with 24 partner communities in 2017:

  • Bridgeport Food Policy Council (Bridgeport, Connecticut)
  • Christian County/Hopkinsville Development Corporation (Hopkinsville, Kentucky)
  • City of Graham, North Carolina
  • City of Martinsville, Virginia
  • City of Nampa, Idaho
  • The Clinton County Cooperative Extension Service (Albany, Kentucky)
  • Detroit Public Schools (Detroit, Michigan)
  • DowntownABQ MainStreet Initiative (Albuquerque, New Mexico)
  • Henderson-Vance Downtown Development Commission (Henderson, North Carolina)
  • Humboldt Chamber of Commerce (Humboldt, Tennessee)
  • Jamestown Renaissance Corporation (Jamestown, New York)
  • Local Foods Coalition (Alamosa, Colorado)
  • Louisiana State University Agricultural Center (Tallulah, Louisiana)
  • Mariposa Community Health Center (Nogales, Arizona)
  • McComb Economic Development Organization (McComb, Ohio)
  • Mountain Comprehensive Health Organization (Harlan, Kentucky)
  • Municipality of Coamo, Puerto Rico
  • Nez Perce Tribe (Lapwai, Idaho)
  • North Coast Opportunities (Ukiah, California)
  • Nuestras Raices (Holyoke, Massachusetts)
  • West Central Missouri Community Action Agency (Appleton City, Missouri)
  • West Virginia Community Development Hub (Whitesville, West Virginia)
  • Village of Greenwich, New York
  • Working in Neighborhoods (Cincinnati, Ohio)

Read the April 2017 summary report describing the projects these communities will undertake.

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2016 Partner Communities

Local Foods, Local Places worked with 27 partner communities in 2016:

  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Bessemer, Alabama
  • Christiansburg, Virginia
  • Connellsville, Pennsylvania
  • Crisfield, Maryland
  • Dallas, Texas
  • Denver, Colorado
  • Fresno, California
  • Gainesville, Missouri
  • Gary, Indiana
  • Gloucester, Massachusetts
  • Greeley, Colorado
  • Henderson, Nevada
  • High Point, North Carolina
  • Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Jackson, Tennessee
  • Keeseville, New York
  • Lake Village, Arkansas
  • Martin, Tennessee
  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Middlesboro, Kentucky
  • Mission, South Dakota
  • Palmer, Alaska
  • Passaic, New Jersey
  • Rainelle, West Virginia
  • Walterboro, South Carolina
  • Winder, Georgia

Learn more about the 2016 partner communities:

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2015 Partner Communities

Local Foods, Local Places worked with 26 partner communities in 2015:

  • Ajo, Arizona
  • Allentown, Pennsylvania
  • Barbourville, Kentucky
  • Canton, New York
  • Clarksdale, Mississippi
  • Fallon, Nevada
  • Flippin, Arkansas
  • Forest County, Pennsylvania
  • Hazard, Kentucky
  • Idabel – Choctaw Nation, Oklahoma
  • Itta Bena, Mississippi
  • Jefferson City, Missouri
  • Lafayette, Louisiana
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Loyal, Wisconsin
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • North Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Osceola, Arkansas
  • Rocky Mount, North Carolina
  • Tracy City, Tennessee
  • Tuskegee, Alabama
  • Unity, Maine
  • Vinton, Texas
  • Wheeling, West Virginia
  • Williamson, West Virginia
  • Youngstown, Ohio

Learn more about the 2015 partner communities:

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