Grants are available to promote the production of specialty crops like fruits, vegetables and tree nuts. The Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry has $380,000 to fund grants that will enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops according to Agriculture Marketing Coordinator Jason Harvey. Applications must be submitted by April 19.
“There’s a lot to be gained by expanding Oklahoma’s specialty crop industry,” Harvey said. “The grants allow agricultural organizations and individuals to do research on growing techniques or developing new varieties and then share the information with others.”
Grants must impact the specialty crop industry as a whole and cannot be used to solely enhance an individual farming operation.
Specialty crops include many fruit, nut, vegetable, herb and cut flower crops. The focus of the grants is to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops by increasing nutrition knowledge, improving production efficiency, reducing distribution costs, enhancing food safety and developing new seed varieties. Eligible projects should impact the entire specialty crop industry and/or the public. Single organizations, institutions and individuals are encouraged to participate as project partners.
Online resources include a Specialty Crop Grant Program application, grant application manual, an example of a previously funded project and an evaluation form. Go to http://www.ag.ok.gov/mktdev/scg.htm for details.
For additional information, call Jason Harvey at (405) 522-5563 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.