The National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC), an organization committed to advancing business opportunities for certified minority business enterprises, announced on Wednesday that it had received a grant of $220,000 from Walmart. The funds support the Black Farmers Equity Initiative, a program designed to address racial disparities in the American agricultural industry.
This financial backing will enable NMSDC to evaluate the program further and support a second group of Black farmers.
The Black Farmers Equity Initiative, initially supported by Cargill, was designed by the NMSDC to address these disparities and advance agricultural supply chain access for Black farmers. In addition, the program offers strategic business support and skills development for its participants.
Jetheda Hernandez, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances and Programs at NMSDC, expressed her gratitude to Walmart for supporting the Black Farmers Equity Initiative. Their support will help build on the success of the program’s first cohort and work towards creating more equity in the agricultural industry.
The director of Walmart.org Center for Racial Equity, Monique Carswell, emphasized the company’s dedication to improving opportunities for Black entrepreneurs. She stated that creating pathways for Black farmers to achieve equality in the agriculture industry is crucial. In addition, she believes that certification and learning solutions are crucial to increasing opportunities for growth and scalability, and Walmart.org is pleased to support this initiative.
The first Black Farmers Equity Initiative cohort recently graduated, with ten farmers from across the country completing the program. As part of their participation, they will receive NMSDC certification, setting them toward better opportunities in the agricultural industry. The Walmart grant promises to extend these opportunities to a broader pool of Black farmers, propelling efforts to address longstanding racial inequities in the farming sector.