USDA Announces Pandemic Assistance Funding for Specialty Crop Producers and Others

USDA announced the availability of more than $330 million to help agricultural producers and organizations as part of the Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative launched in March. This funding includes $169.9 million for the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP), the availability of $75 million for Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program grantees, and approximately $80 million in payments to domestic users of upland and extra-long staple cotton. Funding for SCBGP includes $72.9 million available to states as part of the annual Farm Bill funding for the program and an additional $97 million available as emergency funding for applications. Meanwhile, active Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program (GusNIP) and Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) grantees may request funding to allow them to address critical food and nutrition security needs of low-income communities, enhance the resilience of food and healthcare systems impacted by the pandemic, and maximize funds reaching participants in communities in need.