WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service announced on Aug. 23 that $72.9 million will be awarded to 55 states and territories through the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. The grant program will provide funding to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops and support crop growers through marketing, education and research.
The fiscal year 2023 SCBGP funding is awarded to the departments of agriculture in all 50 states, the District of Columbia. Funding for program is authorized by the 2018 Farm Bill.
States are encouraged to sub-award funding to projects that address the needs of U.S. producers of fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture and nursery crops. The funded projects include investing in food safety, crop research, including research to focus on conservation and environmental outcomes, developing new and improved seed varieties and specialty crops, and regulating pest and disease control. Additional projects focus on increasing child and adult nutrition knowledge and consumption of specialty crops, as well as improving efficiency and reducing costs of distribution systems.
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