The call is open for producers, processors, cooperatives, associations, and similar firms to apply for USDA Value-Added Producer Grants. For more information, go to: https://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/business-programs/value-added-producer-grants. Proposals are due at the end of April.
The VAPG program funds business and market expansion with the goal of increasing income, jobs, and economic activity through conversion of commodities into value-added products. Raw materials are broadly defined, and not limited to ‘commodities’ like corn and soy. In recent years, Vermont businesses have expanded wineries, cider processing, salami producers, cheesemaking, and numerous other projects. I have served on the review committee in the past and can vouch that this is a great program for businesses that want to take their production to a new level.
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition has published a guide on the program at: https://sustainableagriculture.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/2022-NSAC-VAPG-Farmers-Guide.pdf