TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) are reminding Florida agricultural producers, families and veterans advocates, and those in food safety and veterinary medicine of the various National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) funding opportunities offered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
“From military veteran training to increasing nutrition access for low-income children, I encourage Florida producers, advocates, and others to learn more about these wide-ranging funding opportunities,” said Commissioner Enhancing Agricultural Opportunities for Military Veterans Competitive Grant Program
The Enhancing Agricultural Opportunities for Military Veterans program provides grants to non-profits to increase the number of military veterans in agriculture. The program provides grants to non-profits to help veterans gain farming and ranching knowledge and skills through comprehensive, hands-on and immersive model programs that lead to successful careers in the food and agricultural industry. The program encourages the development of training opportunities specifically designed for military veterans. Deadline: Tuesday, March 23, 2021
The Food and Agriculture Service Learning program increases knowledge of agricultural sciences and improves the nutritional health of children. The program focuses on increasing the capacity for food, garden, and nutrition education within host organizations, such as school cafeterias and classrooms, while fostering community engagement between farms and school systems. This initiative is part of a broader effort to increase access to school meals for low-income children and greatly improve meal quality. Deadline: Monday, May 3, 2021
The Veterinary Services Grant (VSGP) Program supports education and extension activities and practice initiatives that enable veterinarians, veterinary students, veterinary technicians, and veterinary technician students to gain specialized skills. The purpose of VSGP is to develop, implement, and sustain veterinary services and relieve veterinarian shortage situations in the U.S. This program increases the capacity of private practitioners to provide food animal veterinary services in designated rural veterinarian shortage situations. Deadline: Friday, April 16, 2021
The 1890 CBG program strengthens teaching, research, and extension projects in the food and agricultural sciences by building the institutional capacities of the 1890 Land-Grant Institutions, including Tuskegee University, West Virginia State University, and Central State University. The program supports projects that strengthen teaching programs in the food and agricultural sciences. Applications submitted to CBG must address at least one of the following NIFA strategic goals: sustainable bioenergy; food security; childhood obesity prevention; or food safety. Deadline: Friday, September 10, 2021
The Children, Youth, and Families at Risk (CYFAR) program improves the quality and quantity of comprehensive community-based programs for at-risk children, youth, and families supported by the Cooperative Extension System. The CYFAR program mission is to marshal resources of the Land-Grant and Cooperative Extension Systems to develop and deliver educational programs that equip limited-resource families and youth, who are at-risk for not meeting basic human needs, with the skills they need to lead positive, productive, contributing lives. Deadline: Friday, February 19, 2021
NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) – Education and Workforce Development (EWD) focuses on developing the next generation of research, education, and extension professionals in the food and agricultural sciences. EWD invites applications in five areas: professional development for agricultural literacy; training of undergraduate students in research and extension; fellowships for predoctoral candidates; fellowships for postdoctoral scholars, and a brand-new program for agricultural workforce training. Deadline: Thursday, July 1, 2021
The Food Safety Outreach Program complements and expands the national infrastructure of the National Food Safety Training, Education, Extension, Outreach, and Technical Assistance Competitive Grants Program. Food Safety Outreach builds upon that national infrastructure, with a sustained focus on delivery of customized training to the target audiences. Awardees will develop and implement food safety training, education, extension, outreach and technical assistance projects that address the needs of owners and operators of small to mid-sized farms, beginning farmers, socially-disadvantaged farmers, small processors, or small fresh fruit and vegetable merchant wholesalers. Grant applications will be solicited directly from those in local communities to include those from community-based organizations, non-governmental organizations, food hubs, farm cooperatives, extension, and other local groups. Deadline: Thursday, April 1, 2021
The Equipment Grant Program (EGP) serves to increase access to shared-use food and agricultural sciences’ special purpose equipment/instruments for applied research at institutions of higher education, including State Cooperative Extension Systems. EGP strengthens the quality and expands the scope of fundamental and applied research at eligible institutions, by providing opportunities to acquire one piece of major equipment or instruments to support research, training, and extension goals, that otherwise may be too costly and/or not appropriate for support through other NIFA grant programs. EGP does not support the acquisition of suites of equipment to outfit research laboratories /facilities or to conduct independent experiments simultaneously. Rather, it is intended to help fund items of equipment that will upgrade infrastructure. Deadline: Tuesday, March 16, 2021
Alfalfa Seed and Alfalfa Forage System Program (ASAFS) supports the development of improved alfalfa forage and seed production systems. Proposals submitted to ASAFS should address one or more of the following priorities: (1) Improving alfalfa forage and seed yield through better nutrient, water and/or pest management; (2) Improving persistence of alfalfa stands by lessening biotic or abiotic stresses; (3) Improving alfalfa forage and seed harvesting and storage systems to optimize economic returns; (4) Improving estimates of alfalfa forage quality as an animal feed to increase forage usage in animal feeds; and/or (5) Breeding to address biotic and abiotic stresses that impact forage yield and persistence and the production of seed for propagation. Deadline: Friday, April 16, 2021
Application Assistance: All Florida agriculture producers interested in applying should contact their local USDA Service Center today. All USDA Service Centers are open for business, and Service Center staff members from USDA’s Farm Service Agency and Natural Resources Conservation Service will continue to work with producers by phone, email, and digital tools like Microsoft Teams, Box, and OneSpan.
–Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services