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North Central USDA Regional Food Business Center

The North Central USDA Regional Food Business Center focuses on expanding small and mid-sized agricultural value chains in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Center activities include technical assistance to create new value chain connections, expanding supply and demand to and from new and existing markets, improving viability and increasing market value of products, and boosting Upper Midwest regional food systems in response to supply chain weaknesses, small business challenges, and other difficulties exposed and exacerbated by the pandemic.

Our goal is to transform a region that primarily focuses on commodity and large-scale agriculture into an area that also supports smaller, more resilient farm and food practices, specifically focusing on the development of critical infrastructure for small and mid-size livestock processing, fruit and vegetable processing, and warehouse space and storage operations.

Business Consultation

SBPC's Role

As a Technical Assistance Provider, SBPC will develop a regional action plan that will include implementation and funding plan; facilitate value chain/supply chain coordination, including networking and peer-to-peer sharing; assist smaller-scale food producers and food and farm businesses in the middle of the supply chain in identifying and navigating third party financial assistance, particularly from federal, state, tribal, and other sources; and write grant applications.


Technical Assistance 

SBPC partnered with FARRMS to provide education and technical assistance to local food businesses in alignment with our regional and statewide action plans.

FARRMS' mission is to enhance the sustainability of farms and ranches in their communities.

FARRMS offers business planning education, one-on-one technical assistance, micro-loans, and more. 

Fresh Vegetables

Business Builder Grants

These sub-awards may support staff time, business planning activities, software implementation, the purchase of equipment (such as food safety, processing and/or packaging equipment), value chain and supply chain coordination and innovation, product development, and marketing.

Business Builder Grants may also fund supply chain analysis and strategy development for identified gaps and specialization opportunities.

View the April 2024 Q&A session here.


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