-General Information and Q&A

Growers Alliance of Central Texas
was formed in early 
2010 in order to:

*Provide a more unified and powerful voice in guiding issues that impact growers in Central Texas;

*Increase opportunities for growers to reduce operation costs by participating in bulk orders;

*Collaborate with local food organizations to increase outlets for local sustainable food and assure that local growers are appropriately recognized in retail and wholesale establishments using the "Local" brand.

*Strengthen the channel of communication between Austin area farmers in order to protect the integrity of our local food system.

GroACT protects the interests of
Austin area farmers

Questions and Answers about GroACT

What is GroACT?
Growers Alliance of Central Texas, GroACT, was formed in early 2010 when a group of local sustainable and organic growers decided we could achieve more by working cooperatively. Starting as an informal, grassroots group that has saved money on bulk purchases of organic seed potatoes and materials like drip tape, We then created a growers only list serve as a tool to communicate despite our distance from one another. We organized grower only potlucks to connect and inspire. Now we have grown to include over 30 central Texas farms, are a 501c3 non-profit, and offer a farmer emergency medical relief fund.

What are GroACT’s goals?
Currently, we are a group focused upon strengthening ties between growers. In time, we envision that chefs and others may order directly from GroACT members, thereby avoiding unscrupulous middlemen and inflated mark-ups. GroACT may, one day, evolve into a brand of cooperatively marketed high-quality products. However, our first priority is to increase camaraderie amongst growers, learn from each other, and increase confidence in our local food system. Increasingly, farmer alliances are forming to ensure the survival of family farms.

How is GroACT different from other farming groups and nonprofits in the
No other organization exists solely to unify and advance the interests of professional food growers in Central Texas. For instance, Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA) is a statewide nonprofit organization educating farmers and others about organic farming in Texas. We believe organizing amongst ourselves can only help strengthen our local food economy and in turn work hand in hand with other like minded organizations. GroACT is an industry group intended to improve the effectiveness and success of local food growers.

Who can join GroACT? Is there a fee?
There is no fee to join GroACT, which is open to any food grower who is:
-farming on at least one acre and marketing in the Austin area
-earning at least $5,000 per year in sales (e.g., making a living farming)
-growing vegetables, meat, eggs, herbs, and flowers, etc......

This group is of most benefit to sustainable growers or conventional farmers seeking to transition to healthier growing practices.

What farms are active in GroACT?
A group of long-time organic, sustainable farmers have met periodically for years, enjoying potlucks in the slower months at each other's farms. GroACT emerged from this group and includes farms such as: Boggy Creek, Hairston Creek, Onion Creek, Millberg, Urban Roots, Green Gate and Tecolote Farms. More than 150 area farms have been invited to join GroACT.  All are welcome. 

What are the benefits of joining GroACT?
Save money! Make friends! Be heard!

How is GroACT funded?
Currently, we are a mostly all-volunteer organization. Our recent “Truly Local Restaurants” survey, website, list serve, meetings, and emergency fund have been organized by GroACT's founding farmers who are passionate about strengthening our farming community. Many thanks to the farmers and volunteers who initiated this alliance, list serve, website, and survey. We were awarded the Austin Food and Wine Alliance culinary innovation grant in December 2014. We used the funds to achieve our nonprofit status.