Delaware Department of Agriculture announces Specialty Crop Grant availability

The Delaware Department of Agriculture (DDA) is now accepting proposals for anticipated funding through the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. DDA anticipates more than $344,000 to be allocated to increase the competitiveness of Delaware-grown specialty crops. Applications will be accepted through April 20, 2021.

The Specialty Crop Block Grant program is funded through the federal Farm Bill. It covers products, including fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, nursery crops, and floriculture. Projects should benefit the specialty crop industry as a whole and provide a positive impact with measurable outcomes. Grants are available between $5,000 and $50,000 for projects that may last between one and three years in length.

Applications should be submitted by agricultural producers, nonprofit organizations, government entities, for-profit companies, or educational institutions based in Delaware or with a business or educational affiliation based here. Funding cannot be used for field crops, such as corn and soybeans, or animal agriculture.

DDA is offering a virtual grant workshop on March 30, 2021, at 10 a.m. People interested in learning how to apply the grant’s eligibility requirements and priorities should RSVP by March 26 to Ese.Jessa@delaware.gov.

Past Delaware projects have included research on improving commercial broccoli production, expanding community-supported agriculture programs, research on growing persimmons, and marketing to promote locally grown specialty crops.

Proposals for the upcoming fiscal year must be submitted to DDA by 4:30 p.m. on April 20, 2021. The grant evaluation team will review submissions, and selected projects will be included in the Delaware State Plan for USDA review and approval.

For more information about the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program, or to obtain an application, visit online at https://de.gov/scbg.


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