The Delaware Department of Agriculture (DDA) is now accepting proposals for the 2023 Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. The federal Farm Bill is allotting approximately $340,000 through a competitive grant process to fund innovative projects supporting specialty crops and creating new and better markets for the Delaware specialty crop industry. DDA will accept applications through March 24, 2023.
Specialty crops include fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, nursery crops, and floriculture. Projects should benefit the specialty crop industry and provide a positive impact with measurable outcomes. Grants are available between $5,000 and $75,000 for projects lasting one to three years.
Agricultural producers, nonprofit organizations, government entities, for-profit companies, or educational institutions based in Delaware or with a business or academic affiliation based in the state are eligible to apply. Applications requesting funding for field crops, such as corn, soybeans, or animal agriculture, do not qualify for the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program.
DDA is offering an in-person grant workshop. People interested in learning how to apply for the grant’s eligibility requirements and priorities are welcome to attend. For more information, contact DDA Marketing Specialist Ese Jessa by email at Ese.Jessa@delaware.gov.
Past Delaware projects have included expanding community-supported agriculture programs, research on new specialty crop varieties, deer deterrent methods to safeguard specialty crops, and marketing to promote locally grown specialty crops.
Proposals for the upcoming fiscal year must be submitted to DDA by 4:30 p.m. on March 24, 2023. The grant evaluation team will review submissions, with selected projects included in the Delaware State Plan for USDA’s review and final approval.
For questions about Delaware’s Specialty Crop Block Grant Program or to obtain an application, visit online at https://de.gov/scbg.