AK Specialty Crop Block Grant

Alaska Division of Agriculture


Grant amount: Up to US $40,000

Next anticipated deadline: Feb 9, 2019 6:00pm PST (Letter of inquiry)

Later anticipated deadlines: Mar 30, 2019 6:00pm PDT (Full proposal)

Applicant type: Organizations

Funding uses: Applied Project / Program, Education / Outreach, Research

Location of project: Alaska

Location of residency: Alaska

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Overview:

AK Specialty Crop Block Grant

AMS encourages projects that enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops, sustain the livelihoods of American farmers, and strengthen local economies.   

Projects that demonstrate innovative partnerships are encouraged.  Applications that build on a previously funded SCBGP project may be submitted; in such cases, the application should clearly indicate how the project complements previous work.  Applications for grant funds should show how the project impacts multiple businesses in the specialty crop supply chain and/or produces measurable outcomes for the specialty crop industry, rather than a single organization, institution, or individual.   

Alaska SCBGP funds will be distributed to the specialty crop industry through a competitive review process.

In 2017 the projects will be submitted in two separate categories:   

  • Tier I projects, with a maximum award amount of $15,000 and,  
  • Tier II projects, with a funding range of $15,000 to $40,000.   

Tier I projects

Tier I projects are expected to be entry level in concept such as feasibility studies or small variety trial plots.  Tier I projects that are completed successfully and considered to be in good standing with the granting agency will be considered competitive applications for future Tier II projects that expand upon the initial concept.  They should be only one year in duration – noting that funding typically arrives in October.  Therefore, if the project can commence during the winter months, a contract could be in place from November 2017 – October 2018.  If the project isset to start during the growing season, a contract could be in place from May 2018 – April 2019.  All Tier I projects will be completed within one year of contract signing. Please list individual specialty crop producers as well as all organizations that formally support your project and include a letter of support from at least one entity.

Project example:

  • A group of producers submit a proposal to conduct research on the feasibility of planting, cultivating, and growing a specialty crop in a particular area, the results of which can be shared with growers throughout the State.  

Tier II projects

Tier II projects are expected to be professional level in concept, drawing from evidence based research and expertise.  Tier II projects will likely build upon a previously tested concept and will show strong industry support.  They can be for up to two years in duration – noting that funding typically arrives in October.  Therefore, if the project can commence during the winter months, a contract could be in place from November 2017 – October 2019.  If the project isset to start during 5 the growing season, a contract could be in place from May 2018 – April 2020.

Example of an Acceptable Project   

  • An organization requests grant funds to help improve and expand new markets which benefit a wide array of specialty crop producers.  

State Funding Priorities

The Alaska Division of Agriculture, in partnership with statewide specialty crop stakeholders, has identified the following program funding priorities for 2016 ‐ 2017.  Funding priorities are listed in no particular order of importance and are not ranked.

  • Projects focused on specialty crops or regions of the state not previously funded in prior grant rounds.
  • Food safety – including the handling, preparation, transport, storage, or education of specialty crops and reduction of foodborne illness.
  • Innovative production projects and research– including challenges due to climate change or ways to increase production efficiencies.   
  • Market access.
  • Tier I, market feasibility studies.

Alaska Division of Agriculture strongly encourages projects proposing innovative partnerships between researchers and producers that will develop new knowledge to strengthen specialty crop producers’ operations.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.

Eligibility:

  • Any entity may apply, but projects must benefit more than one individual, business or organization.
  • Proposed project benefits must benefit the specialty crop industry and align with program requirements, including funding restrictions. 
  • Projects must solely enhance the competitiveness of U.S. or U.S. territory‐grown specialty crops in either domestic or foreign markets.  
  • Each project must identify at least one expected measurable outcome that specifically demonstrates the project’s impact in solely enhancing the competitiveness of eligible specialty crops. 
  • Applications should describe how the project potentially affects and produces measurable outcomes for the specialty crop industry and/or the public rather than a single business, organization, or individual.  
    • Single businesses, organizations, or individuals are encouraged to participate as project partners.
  • Multi‐state projects that address challenges and opportunities that cross state boundaries are eligible.

Ineligibility:

  • 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.    
    • Requests by individual specialty crop businesses or roadside stands to promote their individual business.  
    • AMS will not fund project that solely benefit a particular commercial product or provide a profit to a single business, organization, or individual.