The USDA recently announced the availability of at least $18 million in funding through its competitive Value-Added Producer Grants (VAPG) program.
Administered by USDA Rural Development, the VAPG program provides grants to producers for working capital, feasibility studies, business plans, and marketing efforts used to establish value-added businesses.
Up to $75,000 is available for a planning grant, and up to $250,000 is available for an implementation grant this year. Value-added grants also can be used to develop new product lines from raw agricultural products or promote additional uses for established products.
This year’s notice includes an extended application period allowing farmers and ranchers time to put together proposals before and after the harvest season. The deadline to submit paper applications is Jan. 31, 2018, and the deadline to submit electronic applications is Jan. 24, 2018. Electronic applications must be submitted through Grants.gov.
More information can be found at cfra.org.