USDA awarding farmers more than $240M in grants

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FILE – In this Dec. 4, 2017, file photo, a farmer harvests crops near Sinsinawa Mound in Wisconsin. A group of Midwestern farmers sued the federal government Thursday, April 29, 2021, alleging they can’t participate in a COVID-19 loan forgiveness program because they’re white. The group of plaintiffs includes farmers from Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota and Ohio. According to the lawsuit, the Biden administration’s COVID-19 stimulus plan provides $4 billion to forgive loans for socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers who are Black, American Indian, Hispanic, Alaskan native, Asian American or Pacific Islander. (Eileen Meslar/Telegraph Herald via AP, File)

The United States Department of Agriculture is awarding farmers more than $240 million in grants.

This will be done through two different USDA programs that help support specialty crop growing, including fruits, vegetables and tree nuts.

Tom Vilsack, the U.S. Secretary of Ag says the “historic level of funding will help the specialty crops industry recover from the effects of the pandemic.”

Through the new funding, the North Dakota Ag Department is receiving a little more than $3.2 million to establish a North Dakota Pavilion at the Gulfood show in Dubai for February of 2022.

Gulfood is the largest annual food event that experts say serves as a gateway to new and emerging markets.

The hope is that the event will increase awareness of our North Dakota companies and their ability to supply reliable, safe specialty crops to global markets.

The funding comes from the 2018 Farm Bill and the consolidated appropriations act of 2021.

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