Funds Available for Specialty Crop Advancement | TSLN.com

Funds Available for Specialty Crop Advancement

­The South Dakota Department of Agriculture (SDDA) announces that funds are available for Specialty Crop Block Grants.

The funds can be used for marketing, promotion, research, food safety, nutrition, distribution and best management practices to advance the specialty crop industry. Specialty crops are generally defined as fruits, nuts, vegetables, honey and some turf and ornamental crops. A full list of specialty crops is also available on the SDDA website http://sdda.sd.gov/.

"Specialty crops in South Dakota provide opportunities for small producers and local food systems offering fresh products and unique value-added businesses. Specialty crops can help round-out development in communities of all sizes across the state," said South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch. "These funds help us support this growing niche of South Dakota agriculture."

Stakeholders have identified this year's top priorities as enhancing the competitiveness of specialty crops through increased sales, increased consumption and sustainable practices of specialty crop production. The deadline for applications is May 2, 2016. Details explaining the application are available at https://sdda.sd.gov/grants/specialty-crop-block-grant/.

Applications should be submitted via email to bob.weyrich@state.sd.us and four printed copies including an original must be mailed to SDDA at 523 E Capitol Avenue, Pierre, SD 57501.

For additional information please contact Bob Weyrich, program manager, at 605.431.8002 or visit him at SDDA's Western Ag Development Office at 711 North Creek Drive, Rapid City, SD.

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–SDDA

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