INDIANA – The Indiana Economic Development Association Foundation is pleased to announce that the US Economic Development Administration (US EDA) has awarded a $100,097 grant to assist four regions in Indiana in creating a strategy to leverage each region’s agricultural assets. The grant will fund the implementation of the Rural Economic Development Model (REDM): a first-of-its-kind process developed in Indiana to assist rural communities in creating new economic development opportunities for Indiana’s farmers.
The US EDA grant will enable 14 counties in Southwest Central Indiana comprised of Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Harrison, Jackson, Knox, Martin, Lawrence, Pike, Spencer, Perry, Orange, and Washington Counties to examine the agricultural output in their regions to identify opportunities for creating new markets, applications, or processing facilities that can enhance the local value of the agricultural output. This will create new markets and income for local farmers, generate more local jobs connected to agriculture, and capture a greater source of revenue for the region’s communities.
The Rural Economic Development model was created as a collaboration between the Indiana Economic Development Association (IEDA), Indiana State Department of Agriculture, and the Purdue Center for Regional Development (PCRD) with support from the Indiana Farm Bureau, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, Indiana Soybean Alliance and the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs.
“Lawrence County has a long history of farming and has always had a diverse and robust farming economy. With more than 147,000 acres of farmland bringing to market over $43,000,000 in the product produced in 2017, Lawrence County still ranks just 76th in the state in gross sales. I am extremely pleased to see federal dollars that will benefit our farmers coming back into our community and the region. On behalf of the farmers I represent, I want to thank Radius Indiana, the Indiana Economic Development Association, The Indiana State Department of Agriculture, and the Purdue Center for Regional Development for their assistance in securing this grant,” states Wallace Branham, Lawrence
County Commissioner, District 3.
The Rural Economic Development Model employs a proprietary technology developed by PCRD that enables counties and regions to examine the agricultural output unique to their locale and then engages a local planning team composed of local economic development officials, farmers, and other local stakeholders to create and implement a plan to leverage local agricultural outputs, expand existing agribusinesses and attract new economic opportunities. The 24-month process will be completed in the Summer of 2023.
Jeff Quyle of Radius Indiana, 812-277-9778 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ashley Willis of Southwest IN Development, 812-277-9778 or email email@example.com
Shance Sizemore od Lawrence County Economic Growth Council 812-275-4493 or email firstname.lastname@example.org