The Kansas Department of Agriculture is accepting applications for the 2013 Specialty Crop Block Grant program. Funds for the program are awarded to the agency by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service. The funds are in turn granted to projects and organizations that promote the competitiveness of specialty crops.
The purpose of the specialty crop program is to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops, which are defined by USDA as “fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops, including floriculture.”
Each state that submits an application that is reviewed and approved by the Agricultural Marketing Service is to receive at least an amount that is equal to the higher of $100,000 or one-third of 1 percent of the total amount of funding made available for that fiscal year. In addition, the Agricultural Marketing Service will allocate the remainder of the grant funds based on the value of specialty crop production in each state in relation to the national value of specialty crop production using the latest available cash receipt data.
In 2012, Kansas received $258,363 for the grant program.
Applications will be evaluated by a team of external reviewers. The team will rate proposals on the ability to successfully promote specialty crops in Kansas and make a positive impact on the Kansas economy. The team will submit those recommendations to the Secretary of Agriculture, who will make the final awards.
Applications are due to KDA no later than May 17, 2013.