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Florida Specialty Crop Block Grant Program

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

Agency Type:

State

Funding Source:

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Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Deadline Date:

01/11/19 5:00 PM EST

Description:

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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 and that are of benefit to more than one organization or product.

The following have been identified as funding priorities for the Florida Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. Projects that address one or more of these priorities may earn additional points during the review process.

- Projects with immediate benefit to the public/industry.
- Projects that expand child and adult knowledge of nutritional benefits, improve access, and increase consumption for Florida specialty crops.
- Projects that increase sales and marketability and drive demand for commercially grown specialty crops.
- Projects to bolster local food systems, such as “buy local produce” programs for schools, prisons, hospitals, restaurants, businesses and others, as well as increased specialty crop sales for community supported agriculture organizations.
- Projects to help specialty crop growers reduce the financial cost and/or environmental impact of their operations, including improved pest and disease management techniques, efficient water management, integrated pest management, organic/sustainable production, native plant horticulture, protected agriculture, and others.

The goal of the SCBGP is to promote and increase opportunities for specialty crop producers.

Major considerations:

- Does the project provide an overall economic benefit to Florida’s specialty crop industry?
- Does the project make good business sense?
- Does the project have a high likelihood of success?
- Are the expected benefits of the project in line with the proposed budget?

The SCBGP supports initiatives that:

- Increase the demand for specialty crops through marketing, advertising and consumer education.
- Develop local and regional food systems.
- Improve access to specialty crops in underserved communities.
- Enhance food safety.
- Improve efficiency within the distribution system and reduce costs.
- Assist all entities in the specialty crop distribution chain in developing “Good Agricultural Practices,” “Good Handling Practices,” and in funding cost share arrangements for funding audits of such systems for small farmers, packers and processors.

Types of Projects:
- Consumer or producer education
- Marketing and promotion
- Pest and plant health
- Research

Examples of Acceptable Projects:
- A nonprofit 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 particular 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 their 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:

$3,800,000

Number of Grants:

25-30

Term of Contract:

Period of Performance: January 1, 2020 - August 31, 2022

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Proposals will be accepted from nonprofit 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 adequately 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.

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:

Key Dates:
- Submission Deadline: January 11, 2019, 5:00 PM EST
- Evaluation of Proposals: January 14 - April 1, 2019
- Florida SCBGP State Plan Due to USDA-AMS: April 2019
- USDA notifies FDACS of approval of funding for projects included in Florida’s SCBGP State Plan:
September 2019
- All applicants notified of the status of their applications: September-October 2019
- FDACS subrecipient agreements prepared for successful applicants: October-December 2019
- Anticipated start date for funded projects: January 1, 2020

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 are required to provide a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number on the application.

The applicant must be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM).

The FDACS agreement with the federal agency provides only for cost reimbursement; therefore, no advance payments will be provided.

Lists of Eligible and Ineligible Crops:
http://www.ams.usda.gov/services/grants/scbgp/specialty-crop

Contact Information:

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

An electronic copy of the application packet must be submitted by email to Specialtycrop@FreshFromFlorida.com. The subject line of the email must be “2019 SCBGP Application” or the application may not be reviewed.

If you are unable to access the internet, a written request for the application packet should be submitted to:

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
Attention: Joshua Johnson
407 S. Calhoun St., M9
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0800

(850) 617-7340

CFDA Number:

10.170

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Florida