Since 1993, CISA has been working to strengthen farms by engaging the community to build the local food economy.
CISA’s Local Hero campaign is the longest running “buy local” program in the country, and it has grown into a comprehensive public awareness and marketing effort with more than 475 local business members. Farmers, specialty food producers, retailers, and wholesale buyers, find out how what membership in Local Hero program can do for your business!
SNAP & Save
Launched in the summer of 2015, SNAP & Save matches SNAP/Food Stamp dollars spent at farmers’ markets, up to $10 per week. This win-win program makes fresh, local food more available to low-income members of our community, and it supports farmers and farmers’ markets.
From starting a new farm to marketing and expanding an existing one, CISA offers a wide range of technical assistance to farmers and other Local Hero members: workshops, one-on-one consulting, online resources, and more.
CISA has been providing shares of the local harvest to low-income seniors since 2004. In 2016, we will serve 490 low-income seniors in partnership with twelve local farms.
Emergency Farm Fund
CISA created this fund in 2011, in partnership with Whole Foods Market and Equity Trust, in response to the damage suffered by farms in western Massachusetts due to Hurricane Irene. The Emergency Farm Fund offers zero-interest loans to assist farmers and farm businesses struggling to meet their immediate needs in the aftermath of severe weather events and other emergencies.