December 6, 2016

ROCKY MOUNT, N.C.—Applications are now being accepted through February 15, 2017 for the 2016 On Track with Healthy Foods grants program in the Twin Counties, presented in partnership by CSX and The Conservation Fund.  The On Track with Healthy Foods program is designed to support community- or faith-based efforts to increase access to healthy foods in vulnerable and underserved communities. The grants will enable food producers, processors and distributors in Nash and Edgecombe Counties to acquire equipment and resources needed to sustain food quality and safety as they sell, store, package and distribute fresh produce, meats, seafood, dairy and other foods. As a result, the program will enhance delivery capabilities and improve the availability of fresh produce and perishable foods for nearby consumers. 

The grants will be made available to charitable entities and public agencies in two categories:

  • Track One Grants, ranging from $1,000 to $10,000, will support community-based production of healthy produce, dairy, seafood and meats; food hubs where healthy foods can be safely stored for distribution; purchases of produce boxes or cold storage bins to keep perishable foods fresh; and transportation vehicles for direct delivery to markets and isolated communities.

  • Track Two Grants, ranging up to $40,000, will support efforts involving three or more groups working together to strengthen food chain connections from field to fork through the purchase and deployment of equipment for food-based social enterprises; the acquisition of land, structures and equipment for healthy food production, aggregation, processing and distribution; and program expenses—including salaries and supplies—for community-based efforts.
In July 2016, CSX joined the State of North Carolina and Carolinas Gateway Partnership in announcing Rocky Mount, North Carolina, as the home for the Carolina Connector intermodal rail terminal, which will serve as a major transportation hub in the Southeastern U.S. and a catalyst for economic growth. Recognizing that limited access to fresh produce, dairy, meats, and seafood can be an issue for some in Edgecombe and Nash counties, CSX made addressing this critical need an immediate priority.

CSX has long been a supporter of The Conservation Fund’s work, including the Grant Program for Transporting Healthy Food, which strengthens local transportation and distribution of healthy food in 22 states where CSX operates, and a focused program to improve and sustain both access to and supply of healthy, fresh food at local farmers’ markets and schools in underserved counties in West Virginia. 

“With CSX’s partnership, we hope to support local organizations that are providing ‘triple bottom line’ benefits that integrate environmental stewardship, community economic development and social justice to address the challenges facing distressed areas in the Twin Counties,” said Mikki Sager, vice president and director of Resourceful Communities at The Conservation Fund. “Organizations working together to make healthy, fresh food affordable and accessible is an essential element of nurturing thriving, healthy communities.

Grant applications are due by February 15, 2017. To download a grant application and see more information about the program, please visit or contact Kathleen Marks at

About CSX 
CSX, based in Jacksonville, Florida, is a premier transportation company. It provides rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services and solutions to customers across a broad array of markets, including energy, industrial, construction, agricultural, and consumer products. For nearly 190 years, CSX has played a critical role in the nation’s economic expansion and industrial development. Its network connects every major metropolitan area in the eastern United States, where nearly two-thirds of the nation’s population resides. It also links more than 240 short-line railroads and more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports with major population centers and farming towns alike.  More information about CSX Corporation and its subsidiaries is available at Like us on Facebook ( and follow us on Twitter (  

About The Conservation Fund
At The Conservation Fund, we make conservation work for America. By creating solutions that make environmental and economic sense, we are redefining conservation to demonstrate its essential role in our future prosperity. Top-ranked for efficiency and effectiveness, we have worked in all 50 states since 1985 to protect more than 7.8 million acres of land. Our Resourceful Communities program helps communities strengthen programs and build connections to support healthy people and places.

Media Contact:
Ann Simonelli | The Conservation Fund | 703-908-5809 |