The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has published new information on how its $100 million Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP) will be organised on the ground, and will offer ‘wrap-around’ support for transitioning and existing organic farmers.
USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Services says it will build partnership networks in six regions across the United States with trusted organizations serving direct farmer training, education, and outreach activities.
“TOPP regions are set geographically and form a mix of states that are well-represented in organic and states that are currently underserved”
The TOPP partnership network covers six regions: the Mid-Atlantic/Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Plains, Northwest, and West/Southwest. Organizations in these regions are actively forming partnerships to serve transitioning and existing organic farmers. TOPP regions are set geographically and form a mix of states that are well-represented in organic and states that are currently underserved. Additional partners will be added as the initiative unfolds, as it will take more time to identify partners that have been traditionally under-represented in organic.
This map shows many of the organizations establishing the partnership network for transitioning and existing organic farmers. Once fully in place, partnerships will provide mentoring services, technical assistance, community building, and organic workforce development.