Value-Added Producer Grant Application Notice Amended

USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service has amended the notice inviting applications for the Value-Added Producer Grant program. The amendment extends the application deadline to May 4, 2021, for hard-copy applications and April 29, 2021, for electronic applications. In addition, $35 million in COVID–19 relief funds has been added to the program, meaning that a total of $76 million in program funding is available. A reduced cost-share match requirement of 10% of the grant amount applies for the $35 million in COVID–19 relief funds. Relief funds will be awarded in application scoring rank order until exhausted. If your application for COVID–19 relief funds is not selected for funding through the competitive process, you will have the opportunity to compete for the additional $41 million in funds if your application scores 50 points or above. You will be contacted by the Agency and will be required to submit a revised budget and work plan that includes the standard cost-share match of at least $1 for every $1 in grant funds. Producers should note that this grant applies to “the use of a recognizably coherent set of agricultural production practices in the growing or raising of the raw commodity, such that a differentiated market identity is created for the resulting product. Examples of eligible products in this category include, but are not limited to, sustainably grown apples, eggs produced from free-range chickens, or organically grown carrots.”