The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is seeking grant applications from Minnesota organizations to “increase the competitiveness of our specialty crops” in domestic and foreign markets.
Specialty crops are defined by the USDA as: fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture and nursery crops, floriculture and processed products with 50% or more specialty crop content. A more comprehensive list of eligible (and ineligible) crops is available. Non-profit organizations, producer organizations, government agencies, universities and other agricultural groups are encouraged to apply. For-profit entities, farms and other businesses are eligible, but these are not business development funds; they are for sector-wide research and development projects. Applications for grant funds should describe how the project potentially affects and produces measurable outcomes for the specialty crop industry and/or the public.
The MDA Specialty Crop Block Grant (SCBG) funding priorities:
Projects that benefit beginning farmers or socially disadvantaged farmers will receive bonus points.
The MDA will consider any comments regarding SCBG funding priorities for future RFPs.
Applications for a FFY 2018 SCBG are due via the MDA’s online application portal by 4:00 PM on Thursday, March 15, 2018.
Ann Kuzj, Grants Specialist
Ag Marketing & Development Division