The SC Department of Agriculture uses federal funding to help producers offset certain costs of growing their business. Commissioner Hugh Weathers is here to tell us about these Cost Share Grants and how to apply.
Yes, Mike, this is funding that we offer through the USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant Program.
We like to incentivize producers that have “skin in the game”. Reimbursement grants are a great way to do that.
Here are some of the opportunities:
- The Organic Certification Cost Share Program, which just opened applications for the year, helps reimburse some of the costs of organic certification. It’s not for everyone, but for some producers it’s a big help.
- The Cold Storage Cost Share program reimburses producers for installing a CoolBot-equipped cold storage space. This helps producers extend their time to market and grow more product.
- The GAP Cost Share grant helps with some costs of Good Agricultural Practices certification.
- Packaging is a huge cost for producers. The Value-Added Packaging grant helps specialty crop producers with some of these costs.
- We offer a Market Development Trade Show & Educational Conference grant to help producer attend and exhibit at industry events.
- For farms that must comply with the Produce Safety Rule, we offer a cost share grant for On-Farm Improvements that help farms comply.
To learn more and apply for reimbursement programs, you can visit the SCDA grants page at agriculture.sc.gov/grants.