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Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP)

Grants to Florida Nonprofits, Agencies, Businesses, and
Individuals to Promote State Agricultural Products

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Deadline Date:

02/05/21 5:00 PM EST


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Grants to Florida businesses, agencies, nonprofits, individuals, and IHEs for projects that promote specific State agricultural products. Funding is intended for projects including research, pest and plant health, marketing and promotion, and consumer or producer education, as well as other projects benefiting the State's economy. The goal of the grant program is to support projects that enhance specialty crops, which are broadly defined as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, and horticulture products, including floriculture.

FDACS has established funding priorities for the SCBGP for the State of Florida, including:

  • Projects to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus inputs required for specialty crop production, or to prevent or reduce leaching/runoff of these nutrients into groundwater or surface waterways.
  • Projects to reduce water use, improve irrigation efficiency, or otherwise decrease the impact of agricultural water use in specialty crop production.
  • Projects to research, encourage, or educate producers and consumers on advanced specialty crop production technologies such as hydroponics, aquaponics, aeroponics, protected culture or controlled environment production, and others.

Federal Funding Priorities: USDA-AMS encourages states to develop projects which benefit the specialty crop industry in one or more of the following ways:

  • Enhance food safety
  • Improve the capacity of all entities in the specialty crop distribution chain to comply with the requirements of the Food Safety Modernization Act (21 U.S.C. Chapter 27), for example, developing Good Agricultural Practices, Good Handling Practices, Good Manufacturing Practices, and in cost share arrangements for funding audits of such systems (including USDA GroupGAP) for small farmers, packers, and processors
  • Invest in specialty crop research, including research to focus on conservation and environmental outcomes
  • Develop new and improved seed varieties and specialty crops
  • Enhance pest and plant disease control
  • Increase child and adult nutrition knowledge and consumption of specialty crops
  • Improve efficiency and reduce costs of distribution systems
  • Enhance sustainability

Examples of Acceptable Projects:

  • A non-profit organization requests funds to conduct an advertising campaign that will benefit their specialty crop members.
  • A state requests funding to contract with a university to conduct research on the feasibility of planting, cultivating, and growing a specialty crop in a specific area, the results of which will be shared with many growers throughout the state during the project.
  • A single grower requests funds to demonstrate the viability of organic small fruit production and partners with an Extension program to publicize the working model of diversification to other regional growers.
  • A single company requests funds to provide a viable pollination alternative to specialty crop stakeholders in a region that currently does not have one.
  • A single farmer erects high tunnels on her property to extend the growing season of tomatoes and lettuce and conducts a field day and farm tour to encourage other small family farmers to adopt the production methods.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 149411

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

20 - 25

Term of Contract:

The anticipated project start date is January 1, 2022, with an end date of August 31, 2024..

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Proposals will be accepted from non-profit organizations, producer organizations, government agencies, universities, and other organizations related to Florida's specialty crop industry. Individuals, individual producers, for-profit businesses, or commercial entities may submit proposals. However, the project must focus on research, education, or demonstration and must benefit the specialty crop industry in a manner that can be replicated by other organizations.

Additional notes to help you determine whether your project is eligible:
- Projects must solely enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops. Consider carefully whether your project is likely to have “spillover” benefits for non-specialty crops. If so, the project is not likely to be funded.
- Projects must benefit more than one product or organization. The SCBGP will not award grant funds for projects that solely benefit a particular commercial product or provide a profit to a single organization, institution or individual. This means that the program will not provide funds to start or expand a farm or other business venture.
- In addition, recipients cannot use grant funds to compete unfairly with private companies that offer equivalent products or services.

Please note that USDA does not classify hemp as a specialty crop. This means that projects to benefit hemp crops or products will not be eligible for funding under the SCBGP.

Examples of Unacceptable Projects:
- A company requests grant funds to purchase starter plants or equipment used to plant, cultivate and grow a specialty crop for the purpose of making a profit, or to expand production of a single business or organization.
- A state requests grant funds to make grants to individual specialty crop businesses or roadside stands to promote their individual businesses.
- A nonprofit organization uses grant funds to purchase produce and then sells that produce to other entities at cost or a higher price than the purchase price while competing with other private companies that sell produce in the area.
- A sole proprietor requests grant funds to redesign his logo in order to make his specialty crop value-added product stand out at the local farmers market.
- A single specialty crop organization requests grant funds to market its organization so that it can increase its membership.

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline to apply is February 5, 2021, by 5:00 PM.

Applications may be submitted through the online application portal OR via email. Please do not include attachments with your application if submitting via email.

Key Dates:
- February 5, 2021, 5:00PM EST: Submission deadline for applications.
- February 8 - March 31, 2021: Evaluation and scoring of applications.
- April 2021: Florida's SCBGP state plan will be submitted to USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service for review.
- September 2021: USDA-AMS notifies FDACS of approval of funding for projects in Florida's state plan.
- October 1, 2021: All applicants receive notice of the final status of their applications.
- October - December 2021: FDACS prepares and executes sub-recipient agreements for successful applicants.
- January 1, 2022: Anticipated start date for projects.

Cost-sharing or matching is not required by the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. Cost-sharing or matching may help to demonstrate external support or project sustainability.

Applicants must have a valid DUNS number and be registered with

Lists of Eligible and Ineligible Crops:

Application guide:

How to apply:

Additional information:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

To apply online, log in on the URL for Full Text, below.

Or email applications to

Joshua Johnson, Program Administrator
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
Division of Marketing and Development
407 South Calhoun Street
Mayo Building, M9
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0800
Phone: (850) 617-7340

CFDA Number:


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Florida

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