Tuesday, February 28, 2017

$320,000 in grants aid Massachusetts specialty crops

Nine grants worth a total of $319,524 will be used in Massachusetts to improve competitiveness of its specialty crops, which include vegetables, fruits, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture and nursery products.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant Program offers the grants that are funded by the United States Farm Bill. Massachusetts recipients are selected by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR), the state's Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) said in a news release.

“Many Massachusetts farmers rely on specialty crops and these grants will allow both them and nonprofits to improve their marketing efforts and increase the overall value of the industry locally,” Gov. Charlie Baker said in the release. “Our administration is proud to support local farmers and provide opportunities for small growers across the commonwealth to become more competitive and increase access to fresh foods to citizens in every municipality.”

Locally produced fruits, vegetables and other specialty crops offer Massachusetts’ residents delicious options for a diverse and nutritious diet, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito said in the release.

“We are grateful for the financial support of the USDA and the hard work of these local nonprofits as our administration works to support the commonwealth’s vital agricultural industry,” Polito said.

Organizations in this story

Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection 1 Winter Street Boston, MA 2108

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