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USDA announces $72.9 mln in grants awarded to bolster competitiveness of US Specialty Crops Industry

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) today announced it has awarded a total of $72.9 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP) funding. The FY 2022 non-competitive awards were made to the departments of agriculture in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Jenny Lester Moffitt was joined by U.S. Representative Kim Schrier to make the announcement during a visit to Washington state.

The SCBGP funding supports farmers growing specialty crops, including fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, and nursery crops. USDA’s support will strengthen U.S. specialty crop production and markets, ensuring an abundant, affordable supply of highly nutritious fruits, vegetables, and other specialty crops, which are vital to the health and well-being of all Americans.

“USDA is excited to fund innovative research and new market opportunities to further support specialty crop producers,” said Under Secretary Moffitt. “The Specialty Crop Block Grant Program continues to strengthen the food system, and USDA looks forward to seeing the impact these funds will have on the specialty crops sector.”

These SCBGP grants will be used to fund projects that support the specialty crop industry by enhancing food safety, investing in specialty crop research, including research to focus on conservation and environmental outcomes, developing new and improved seed varieties and specialty crops, and improving strategies for pest and disease control. In addition, some projects will focus on increasing child and adult nutrition knowledge and consumption of specialty crops and improving efficiency and reducing costs of produce distribution systems.

Funding for the SCBGP grants is authorized by the 2018 Farm Bill and FY 2022 funding is awarded for a three-year period beginning September 30, 2022. Since 2006, USDA has invested more than $953 million through the SCBGP to fund 11,331 projects that have increased the long-term successes of producers and broadened the market for specialty crops in the U.S. and abroad.

For more information:
USDA Public Affairs
Tel.: +1 (202) 720-8998 
PA@usda.gov


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