UPDATED: USDA funds specialty crop grants, research - The Packer

UPDATED: USDA funds specialty crop grants, research

10/01/2012 02:40:00 PM
Andy Nelson

Related article: Industry leaders frustrated with lack of farm bill.

(UPDATED COVERAGE, 3:35 p.m.) The U.S. Department of Agriculture has allocated more than $100 million for two specialty crop programs.

In a conference call Oct. 1, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $55 million in Specialty Crop Block Grant funding and $46 million for new and continuing specialty crop research.

The $55 million in proposed block grant funding will be distributed among 748 initiatives, Vilsack said. They include programs benefiting farmers’ markets, farm-to-school initiatives, new growers, good agricultural practices readiness, sustainability efforts and other initiatives.

The $46 million for proposed research funding will cover 14 programs, Vilsack said. One major initiative will funnel $9 million to the fight against citrus greening in Florida. That will concentrate on halting the spread of greening from infected trees to healthy trees, Vilsack said.

Other projects will cover genomic research on spinach, boosting the quality of locally grown produce and helping locally grown producers be profitable.

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October, 02, 2012 at 10:50 AM

Is the Farm Bill good or bad for America? Take the poll! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTudILWFj94

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