Local Emergency Assistance Farmer Fund
If you’re a small-scale emerging farmer within 200 miles of the Twin Cities and are looking to expand into wholesale markets, the LEAFF program may be able to offer you assistance. LEAFF is not a grant, but a guarantee to buy a specific dollar amount of produce from each accepted farm during the farm season, dependent on funding. Applications for the 2023 LEAFF Program are now closed. Click here to be notified of when applications open for next season.
LEAFF helps small-scale emerging farmers survive the loss of their typical markets due to the pandemic. LEAFF will raise funds and purchase, at fair market value, food grown by these local farmers. LEAFF is not a grant, but a guarantee to buy a set dollar amount of produce from each farm accepted into the program. Farms complete a brief application to participate which is reviewed by program partners.
Hunger Relief Support
The food purchased is donated to food shelves and other hunger relief organizations striving to offer fresh and culturally relevant produce to their communities. Efforts will focus on areas where healthy foods have been inaccessible and neighborhoods with a higher density of BIPOC residents because unemployment rates and COVID-19 have disproportionately affected these populations.
Applications for LEAFF are closed.
Applications are now closed. If you’d like to be a part of the program next growing season, please click the button below.
Frequently Asked Questions
The purpose of this program is to help farmers learn to grow for wholesale, decrease food waste, and get more locally grown, culturally relevant crops into the emergency food system in our region.
Make a donation today! You can also help spread the word about the program to your network, or call your legislative representatives and ask them to support funding for LEAFF.
Yes! To have this page translated to Somali, Hmong or other Southeast Asian languages, contact Tou Xiong. For Spanish, contact Aaron Blyth.
The application is currently open to any farmers who fall into the Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s definition of an emerging farmer (PDF). Applications to the LEAFF program are open to all emerging farmers, selections are made by the Farmer Evaluation subcommittee based on farmer need and funding availability.
If accepted into the LEAFF program, the amount of produce we will purchase from you depends on program funding.
After applying, farmers will be notified if they have been accepted into the program at the end of May 2023. Applications for LEAFF for this year are now closed, to be notified when applications open up next year, please fill out this form.
We will let you know at the same time we let you know if you’ve been accepted into the program.
LEAFF will buy whatever produce you wish to sell each week, provided it is on the LEAFF Accepted Produce List.
Produce must be packaged according to the LEAFF Accepted Produce List. All produce is priced by the full box. Smaller quantities and mixed boxes cannot be accepted at this time.
Produce is delivered to The Good Acre, 1790 Larpenteur Ave. W. Receiving days and times for 2023 are 8am – 3pm on Mondays and Tuesdays.
Not seeing your question answered here? Check out our regularly updated Supplemental F.A.Q.
For questions about the program or application, contact David Van Eeckhout.
To have this website translated to Somali, Hmong or other Southeast Asian languages, contact Xiong Thao at 651-247-8669.
To have this website translated to Spanish, contact Aaron Blyth, or call LEDC: 651-253-7268.
Since LEAFF began in 2020, we have purchased $780,000 in produce from 88 emerging farmers.
Catch up on the latest LEAFF news & info!
LEAFF by the Numbers
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Equity in the Food System
LEAFF partners recognize that our food system was built through the systemic oppression of BIPOC communities, farmers, and consumers and that it continues to be inequitable. Our goal is to provide resources and support to BIPOC farmers to eliminate barriers to success, and provides connections to new wholesale markets and support for longer-term sustainability. We are committed to providing produce purchased through the LEAFF program to organizations supporting those facing hunger and food insecurity in Minnesota.