What do Native producers need to know about the Indian Arts and Crafts Act?

The Indian Arts and Crafts Act (IACA) is a federal law that prohibits false representation in the marketing and selling of Indian products, making it illegal to falsely claim a product is made by a Native American when it is not. The Department of the Interior recently put forward draft revisions to the Indian Arts and Crafts Act Board regulations to include agricultural products. These new draft regulations have potential financial and legal risks for Native producers.

The Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative released a policy analysis that takes a deeper dive into what the Bureau of Indian Affairs' legal authority is to regulate agriculture products under the IACA, the potential risks to Native producers, and the proposed regulations on certification for Native producers.

Read IFAI's Policy Analysis

What can tribes do next? The DOI is seeking input on draft revisions to the IACA regulations, including agricultural products. Here is more information on the upcoming Tribal consultations:

  • July 14 - Tribal Consultation in Fairbanks, AK
  • August 2 - Tribal Consultation Online
  • August 18 - Tribal Consultation in Santa Fe, NM

IACA Resources

Consultation Information

IAC Webinar on Farm Service Agency Discrimination Funding

Section 22007 Discrimination Program - Tribal Producer Discussion

JULY 6 | 8 PM (CT)

Are you a Tribal producer (farmer, rancher, forest landowner) who has experienced discrimination in USDA lending programs? Join the Intertribal Agriculture Council on July 6th to discuss the following:

  • What is discrimination?
  • How to prepare for filing a Section 22007 discrimination claim?
  • Questions/concerns you may have about the Section 22007 discrimination program.

Register Here

New Native Financing Institution to Increase Access to Capital for Farmers and Ranchers

The Native American Agriculture Fund invests $12 million to stand up the first-ever Other Financing Institution (OFI) within the Farm Credit System (FCS), expanding access to hundreds of millions in lending opportunities for Native American producers. The OFI, Native Agriculture Financial Services (NAFS), will begin by participating in loans with Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) investing in agriculture and rural economic development that support Native farmers and ranchers and then expand into providing credit and financial services for Native agriculture producers and Tribal governments.

More information will be available at NativeAgFinance.org.

Visit NAFS Website

Native American Agriculture Fund on the Announcement of the USDA Tribal Advisory Committee Nominations

"Marking a significant milestone following the Keepseagle v. Vilsack settlement, the creation of the Council for Native American Farming and Ranching (CNAFR) took place. This influential public advisory committee, acting as a segment of the USDA Office of Tribal Relations, was set in motion by the Secretary in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). Its function mirrors the recently constituted Tribal Advisory Committee (TAC), providing insightful counsel and constructive recommendations to the Secretary." says Toni Stanger-McLaughlin NAAF CEO.

"The Native American Agriculture Fund (NAAF) is steadfastly dedicated to forming alliances with other organizations to propagate awareness about this esteemed opportunity, which aims to channel learned insights and first-hand experiences of Indian Country agriculture into the USDA leadership. Considering the crucial need for an array of perspectives, diverse experiences, and representation from various regions across Indian Country, it’s indispensable to broaden the scope of integration for both the nomination process and shaping the TAC."

The Tribal Advisory Committee will provide recommendations on USDA policies, programs, and procedures as well as submit an annual report to Congress. Committee members will also ensure that pertinent issues of the Department are brought to the attention of any affected Indian tribe promptly so that timely feedback can be obtained.

Each appointment will be no longer than three (3) years except for the first appointment of the Agriculture Secretary, which shall be for two (2) years.

Submit a request for nominations to the Tribal Advisory Committee via this link: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2023/06/28/2023-13728/intent-to-establish-the-tribal-advisory-committee-and-solicitation-of-nominations-for-membership-to

Nominations must be submitted via email or postmarked by August 14, 2023.

Read the Press Release

NAAF on the Move

WIC CIAO Cherokee Nation Site Visit

The Cherokee Nation was awarded the largest Community Innovation and Outreach Cooperative Agreement grant in the country with $1 million over 18 months to strengthen its WIC program and outreach to more families.

In late June, Cherokee Nation welcomed Deputy Under Secretary for USDA’s Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services Stacy Dean for the announcement of the WIC CIAO outreach program to help strengthen the Women, Infant, and Children program throughout the Cherokee reservation.

Learn More about the Cherokee Project

National Agriculture in the Classroom

NAAF presented at and sponsored teachers to attend the National Agriculture in the Classroom conference. The presentation spoke on methods of agriculture utilized in Indigenous communities in the present and past and their impact on modern farmers and ranchers, as well as learning tribal ecological knowledge (TEK) into the curriculum by utilizing Indigenous storytelling.

The teachers learned new agriculture approaches to bring back to the classroom and networked through hands-on-activities.

What makes you a Native Farm Bill #AGvocate?

Toni Stanger-McLaughlin Native Farm Bill Coalition Agvocate Video

Toni Stanger-McLaughlin shares why she is a #NativeAgvocate.

Indian Country is a leading force in American agriculture, with more than 80,000 individual Native producers contributing $3.5 billion to the industry. Members of the Native Farm Bill Coalition are advocating for policy changes in the 2023 Farm Bill that would positively impact Indian Country, such as strengthening tribal self-governance, allowing Tribes to manage nutrition programs, investing in economic development opportunities in rural communities, and much more.

Learn more at our website: https://www.nativefarmbill.com/native...

Native Farm Bill Coalition

Makoce Agriculture Development Farm Bill Priorities

Nick Hernandez

Oglala Lakota

In this short video, learn from Nick Hernandez Founder and CEO of Makoce Agriculture Development Inc. about his 2023 Farm Bill priorities. Dive into the importance of FDIPR to Native agriculture products and the importance of accessing local foods.

Watch more NAAF Videos

Intern for Natural Resources Committee

Applications open June 23.

The Natural Resources Committee Democrats is opening applications for full-time interns for Fall 2023, September – December.

Applicants must be organized, detail-oriented, and dependable. Above all, they are seeking candidates who are passionate about issues within the Natural Resources Committee’s jurisdiction, demonstrate exceptional interpersonal skills, and are eager to learn about committee process. Interns will conduct legislative research, prepare for hearings, assist with administrative duties, perform outreach, and aide communications. The position is based in Washington, D.C and interns will be expected to work in-office when Congress is in session and as needed.

The position comes with a monthly stipend of $3,200 plus transit benefits. Applications are due by July 7th.

Application materials:

A cover letter, résumé, and a short writing sample.

Apply Here
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Takshanuk Watershed Council

Haines, AK

The Takshanuk Watershed Council just planted their Marvin Garden with the help of the Haines Elementary School. Just in time for their summer Gardening Camp.

This is part of Takshanuk Watershed Council’s Gardening Education program supported with NAAF funds. In this project, Native students in the towns of Haines, Klukwan, and Mosquito Lake will learn how to grow food in Alaska’s Chilkat Valley. They will develop their skills in food production and composting while learning how to generate income from local produce.

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