If your farm or food business is an SBA “small business” you may be eligible for funding for grants to help you respond to coronavirus.
Elizabeth Higgins, Ag Business Management Extension Specialist
The recently announced USDA Pandemic Response and Safety (PRS) Grant Program provides grants between $1,500 to $20,000 to farmers of eligible commodities, businesses that provide post-harvest packing and sorting of specialty crops, food processors/manufacturers (including meat slaughter and processing), food wholesalers (including food hubs), all farmers markets, and businesses offering refrigerated warehousing and storage of food products to respond to coronavirus, including for measures to protect workers against COVID-19. This is the link to the website for the program Pandemic Response and Safety Grant Program - usda (grantsolutions.gov).
What is eligible for funding?
The grant covers:
You may request funds for costs already incurred and/or anticipated costs. The costs must be associated with eligible activities/outcomes implemented between January 27, 2020, and December 31, 2021. Funds will be sent as a single payment at the time of award.
What should you do to be ready to apply?
Applicants will be required to obtain a DUNS Number from Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) prior to applying for this program. D&B has created a custom landing page to streamline this process. Visit the application website (https://usda-ars.grantsolutions.gov/) for more information. DO THIS ASAP!
Are You Eligible?
USDA is focusing this first round of funding on 1) certain small sized producers, 2) food processors and distributors that meet small business size standards, and 3) farmers markets . The determination as to whether a farm is an SBA small business is different than USDA definitions for a small farm. For example, a small apple farm is a farm whose revenue is $5,000,000/year or less over a 3 year average.
Check whether your farm or business is a “small business” using this link. Eligibility Info - usda (grantsolutions.gov).This eligibility link also lists the eligible business types for this round of funding.
What if I am Not Eligible?
USDA is focusing this first round of funding on certain commodities due to the unique impacts of the pandemic on their businesses. According to the website, USDA may expand eligibility in future rounds of funding to include additional businesses not covered by the first round. Future rounds are dependent upon availability of funds.
What if I have more than one type of eligible business (e.g. a farm and a packing house), can I apply for more than one grant?
If the operations are registered as separate business entities with unique DUNS numbers and meet the PRS eligibility requirements, then each entity may apply for PRS funding.
For More Information
I will have a program on applying for this program on October 13th (Wednesday) at 6:30pm. To register go to https://cornell.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_p2QHV1wPQbeJIt8ufrgLgA.
For more information contact me (Liz Higgins) firstname.lastname@example.org.
 Eligible Crops: Dry Pea and Bean Farming; Vegetables; Fruit (including tree fruit and grapes), Tree Nuts; Mushrooms, Food Crops Grown Under Cover; Nursery and Tree Production
Nursery and Tree Production.
 Aquaculture and Apiculture
Last updated October 19, 2021