The U.S. Department of Agriculture is buying $30 million of table grapes.
The purchases fall under the USDA’s Section 32 program, designed to help grower returns by diverting commodities from normal channels of trade and commerce. All purchases in the program are U.S. products.
The grapes are destined to school meal programs, food banks and “various food nutrition assistance programs,” according to a USDA news release.
The Agricultural Trade Promotion program, one of the three ways the USDA is responding to recent tariffs and trade barriers, has allocated almost $6 million to the California Table Grape Commission to promote grapes in export markets.
The USDA will seek bids “in the near future,” according to the release. They will be available through the Web-Based Supply Chain Management system, and all notices, including changes in solicitations and who receives the purchase contracts, will go through the system, according to the release, along with the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service site.
Vendors who are new to the program must meet AMS requirements. The AMS contact for new vendors is Andrea Lang, [email protected], and 202-7204237.
To receive e-mail updates from the USDA’s AMS, including contract awards, and information on commodity purchases, sign up at the AMS website.