PRIOR LAKE (AP) — Minnesota Native American leaders are part of an initiative to bring more farm bill funding to Indian Country.

More than 30 tribes across the country have formed the Native Farm Bill Coalition.

Minnesota's Shakopee Mdewakanon Sioux Community is leading the effort.

The lobbying effort is an outgrowth of programs to improve health and expand access to healthy food for Native Americans. Keith Anderson is vice chair of the tribe. He says the coalition illustrates a long-term commitment to giving Indian tribes a louder voice.

The United States Department of Agriculture says more than 56,000 Native Americans operate farms and ranches across the U.S.

The new bill is expected to provide nearly $500 billion in funding over the next five years.