Ministry of Agriculture announces Indian country initiatives


USDA: Tom Vilsack Opens USDA Temple of Tribal Nations – White House Tribal Nations Summit – November 15, 2021

Atop White House Tribal Chiefs, USDA Announces New Initiatives Serving Indian Country

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Indianz.Com

The following is the text of a press release dated November 15, 2021 from the Ministry of Agriculture.

WASHINGTON, DC – At today’s historic White House Tribal Chiefs Summit, US Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced several new initiatives that expand USDA’s commitment to serving the country Indian through equitable policies and programs. “USDA respects the unique nation-to-nation relationship between the federal government and the tribal nations,” Secretary Vilsack said. “Today, we are launching initiatives that reframe and reinvent the way USDA supports indigenous agriculture and tribal communities. These are among the bold actions of the Biden-Harris administration to ensure that the USDA appropriately engages tribal nations in a way that aligns with their sovereignty and our nation’s treaty trust and responsibility. .

USDA’s Indigenous Food Sovereignty Initiative promotes traditional diets, Indian country food and agriculture markets, and Indigenous health through food adapted to dietary needs Native American / Alaska Native (AI / AN). USDA is partnering with tribal service organizations on seven projects to reinvent federal food and agriculture programs from an Indigenous perspective and to inform future USDA programs and policies. Projects include the launch of new seed conservation centers, a video series on wild foraging and native cooking, featuring chef Sean Sherman (founder of The Sioux Chef), the marketing of ‘Native Produced Foods and a Livestock Transition Handbook. to the production of bison. USDA Pledges to Expand Tribal Self-Determination (PDF, 201 KB), enabling greater autonomy and decision-making over USDA programs and policies that affect tribal nations. The 2018 Farm Bill authorizes the Forest Service and the Food and Nutrition Service of the USDA to engage in self-determination demonstration projects for the first time. The first round of tribal demonstration projects, announced on November 1, is an important step in increasing tribal food sovereignty and supporting tribal food economies. The USDA Forest Service is conducting demonstration projects to protect lands and tribal communities from risk and restore tribal co-management authority over the national forest system. It is important to note that the USDA will also be looking at current statutory authorities that can be used to promote tribal sovereignty, with a view to statutory expansion if necessary.

Oklahoma State University Library: Tribal Treaty Database
The new USDA-DOI Tribal Treaty Database, compiled with Oklahoma State University, will provide online access to Tribal Treaties. This database will help federal agencies implement treaty obligations. The database will be accessible to the public, searchable by word and indexed. Users can search the database by tribe, state, and keywords such as rights of way and hunting and fishing provisions. Learn more about the beta in this video tutorial; Comments are welcome. Finally, the Secretary launched the new USDA Tribal Nations Temple, reflecting the government-to-government relationship and trust responsibility to tribal nations. The Hall is currently displaying flags from tribal nations and the USDA is inviting more tribal nations to contribute flags. The hall also features indigenous artwork from across Indian country and displays of food produced by both indigenous and indigenous people.

The USDA touches the lives of all Americans every day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris administration, the USDA is transforming the American food system with a greater emphasis on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe food, healthy and nutritious in all communities, creating new markets and income streams for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in clean energy infrastructure and capacity in communities. rural America, and a commitment to equity department-wide by removing systemic barriers and creating a workforce that is more representative of America. To learn more, visit usda.gov.


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