The Oregon Department of Agriculture is now accepting concept proposals for the next round of the USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. Those interested in applying for a grant can take part in one of two upcoming webinars. The first will be at 10 a.m. this Friday, Jan. 20. Another will be held a week later, at 10 a.m. Friday, Jan. 27. Online registration for both seminars is now available.
Approximately $1 million is expected to be available to agriculture industry associations, producer groups, processors, commodity commissions, non-profits, for profits, and local government agencies in Oregon. Those interested begin by submitting a two-to-three page concept proposals to ODA. Concept proposals can be submitted online and must be received by noon on Monday, Feb. 27, 2012.
The following project areas have been prioritized for 2012:
- Market development and access, both international and farm-direct/local;
- Product and varietal development;
- Value-added initiatives;
- Innovation and productivity;
- Consumer education;
- Food safety and traceability; and
- Certification and producer outreach, including, but not limited to, GAP/GHP, identity preserved, organic, sustainability, or other market assurance programs.
For more information on concept paper submission and the grant process, log on to ODA’s specialty crop block grant information page, or contact Katie Pearmine at ODA’s Agricultural Development and Marketing Division, 503-872-6600.