USDA Pronounces Help for On-Farm Meals Security Bills for Specialty Crop Growers

HOLLIS, NEW HAMPSHIRE, JUNE 17, 2022 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack introduced that the US Division of Agriculture (USDA) plans to offer as much as $ 200 million in help for specialty crop producers who incur eligible on-farm meals security program bills to acquire or renew a meals security certification in calendar years 2022 or 2023. USDA’s new Meals Security Certification for Specialty Crops (FSCSC) program will assist to offset prices for specialty crop producers to adjust to regulatory necessities and market-driven meals security certification necessities, which is a part of USDA’s broader effort to rework the meals system to create a extra degree enjoying area for small and medium producers and a extra balanced, equitable economic system for everybody working in meals and agriculture.

Specialty crop operations can apply for help for eligible bills associated to a 2022 meals security certificates issued on or after June 21, 2022, starting June 27, 2022. USDA is delivering FSCSC to offer important help for specialty crop operations, with an emphasis on fairness in program supply whereas constructing on classes discovered from the COVID-19 pandemic and provide chain disruptions. Vilsack made the announcement from Hollis, NH, the place he toured an area, family-owned farm and highlighted USDA’s efforts to assist scale back prices for farmers and help native economies by offering important funding to chop regulatory prices and enhance market alternatives for farmers in New Hampshire. and throughout the nation.

“The continued financial challenges as a result of COVID-19 pandemic have created substantial monetary challenges for small and really small producers to satisfy regulatory necessities and entry extra markets,” Vilsack stated. “These challenges had been significantly acute for specialty crop producers, a lot of whom wanted to shortly and fully pivot their operations as demand shifted away from conventional markets, resembling eating places and meals service. As we construct again higher, our meals techniques should be each extra inclusive and extra aggressive. By serving to mitigate the prices of on-farm meals security certification, the FSCSC program will help truthful, clear meals techniques rooted in native and regional manufacturing and supply small-scale producers an actual alternative to deliver dwelling a higher share of the meals greenback and assist create jobs. ”

Program Particulars

FSCSC will help specialty crop operations that incurred eligible on-farm meals security certification and associated bills associated to acquiring or renewing a meals security certification in calendar years 2022 and 2023. For annually, FSCSC covers a share of the specialty crop operation’s value of acquiring or renewing their certification, in addition to a portion of their associated bills.

To be eligible for FSCSC, the applicant should be a specialty crop operation; meet the definition of a small enterprise or very small enterprise; and have paid eligible bills associated to the 2022 (issued on or after June 21, 2022) or 2023 certification.

Specialty crop operations could obtain help for the next prices:

  • Growing a meals security plan for first-time meals security certification.
  • Sustaining or updating an current meals security plan.
  • Meals security certification.
  • Certification add charges.
  • Microbiological testing for merchandise, soil amendments and water.
  • Coaching.

FSCSC funds are calculated individually for every class of eligible prices. A better fee fee has been set for socially deprived, restricted useful resource, starting and veteran farmers and ranchers. Particulars concerning the fee charges and limitations could be discovered at farmers.gov/food-safety.

Making use of for Help

The FSCSC software interval for 2022 is June 27, 2022, by means of January 31, 2023, and the appliance interval for 2023 shall be introduced at a later date. FSA will concern funds on the time of software approval for 2022 and after the appliance interval ends for 2023. If calculated funds exceed the quantity of accessible funding, funds shall be prorated.

specialty crop producers can apply by finishing the FSA-888, Meals Security Certification for Specialty Crops Program (FSCSC) software. The applying, together with different required paperwork, could be submitted to the FSA workplace at any USDA Service Middle nationwide by mail, fax, hand supply or through digital means. Producers can go to farmers.gov/service-locator to seek out their native FSA workplace. Specialty crop producers may also name 877-508-8364 to talk immediately with a USDA worker prepared to help.

Producers can go to farmers.gov/food-safety for extra program particulars, eligibility info and types wanted to use.

USDA touches the lives of all People every day in so many constructive methods. Beneath the Biden-Harris administration, USDA is remodeling America’s meals system with a higher give attention to extra resilient native and regional meals manufacturing, fairer markets for all producers, making certain entry to secure, wholesome and nutritious meals in all communities, constructing new markets and streams. of earnings for farmers and producers utilizing local weather good meals and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clear vitality capabilities in rural America, and committing to fairness throughout the Division by eradicating systemic boundaries and constructing a workforce extra consultant of America. To study extra, go to usda.gov.

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USDA is an equal alternative supplier, employer, and lender.

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