USDA to fund $25 million in value-added producer grants

decrease font size  Resize text   increase font size       Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

USDA announced $25 million in funding intended to help rural businesses grow, diversify, and create jobs in the department's ongoing effort to support local and regional food systems.

The funding is distributed through the Value-Added Producer grants, an element of the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative. The grants can be used for a wide range of purposes, but often help businesses develop markets for niche and specialty products.

For example, grants were awarded for a study to determine if it is feasible to start a sheep cheese creamery at KJ'n Ranch Inc. in Montana as well as a grant providing improved packaging, marketing, and working capital for a crawfish processing facility in Louisiana.

"The funding we are announcing today will have far-reaching, positive impacts in rural communities across the country," Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said, adding that the 2014 Farm Bill expanded the program. "The investments will help businesses create new products, expand their operations, and support local and regional food systems."

Through the grants, $25 million will be dispersed among 247 businesses in 46 states, Puerto Rico, and Micronesia. One such business is Miles Smith Farm LLC in Loudan, N.H., where Vilsack made the announcement. Miles Smith Farm's grant is to market and produce burgers made from 55 percent grass-fed beef and 45 percent ground organic pork. The mix, which the farm's owner calls "the burger that squeals with flavor," hopes to produce a burger with fat and flavor levels a grass-fed burger cannot produce alone.

Since 2009, USDA has awarded 863 Value-Added Producer Grants totaling $108 million. Twenty percent of the grants and 16 percent of total funding has been awarded to beginning farmers and ranchers. The 2014 Farm Bill increases mandatory funding for the program from $15 million to $63 million over five years.

Buyers Guide

Doyle Equipment Manufacturing Co.
Doyle Equipment Manufacturing prides themselves as being “The King of the Rotary’s” with their Direct Drive Rotary Blend Systems. With numerous setup possibilities and sizes, ranging from a  more...
A.J. Sackett Sons & Company
Sackett Blend Towers feature the H.I.M, High Intensity Mixer, the next generation of blending and coating technology which supports Precision Fertilizer Blending®. Its unique design allows  more...
R&R Manufacturing Inc.
The R&R Minuteman Blend System is the original proven performer. Fast, precise blending with a compact foot print. Significantly lower horsepower requirement. Low inload height with large  more...
Junge Control Inc.
Junge Control Inc. creates state-of-the-art product blending and measuring solutions that allow you to totally maximize operating efficiency with amazing accuracy and repeatability, superior  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The flagship blending system for the Layco product line is the fully automated Layco DW System™. The advanced technology of the Layco DW (Declining Weight) system results in a blending  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The LAYCOTE™ Automated Coating System provides a new level of coating accuracy for a stand-alone coating system or for coating (impregnating) in an automated blending system. The unique  more...
John Deere
The DN345 Drawn Dry Spreader can carry more than 12 tons of fertilizer and 17.5 tons of lime. Designed to operate at field speeds up to 20 MPH with full loads and the G4 spreader uniformly  more...
Force Unlimited
The Pro-Force is a multi-purpose spreader with a wider apron and steeper sides. Our Pro-Force has the most aggressive 30” spinner on the market, and is capable of spreading higher rates of  more...
BBI Spreaders
MagnaSpread 2 & MagnaSpread 3 — With BBI’s patented multi-bin technology, these spreaders operate multiple hoppers guided by independent, variable-rate technology. These models are built on  more...

Comments (0) Leave a comment 

e-Mail (required)


characters left

Tube Series (TS) Conveyors

USC’s Tube Series Conveyors combine the gentleness of the signature Seed Series with the traditional stability of a tube-style conveyor, ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Feedback Form