If you’re looking for a way to improve your rural area, the USDA rural development grants may be your answer. That said, the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) offers much more than just grants. You can find various programs that are designated to boost the development of rural areas in United States. For now, let’s focus on the grant opportunities, shall we?
USDA Rural Development Grants Opportunities
Below are some of the USDA rural development grants available for each State in the United States:
Federal State Marketing Improvement Program (FSMIP)
Trough the FSMIP program, the USDA provides funds that can be used by each State’s relevant agencies that are related to US food and agricultural products. The fund is divided to each State’s Department of Agriculture, Experiment Stations, etc. The purpose of the program is to search for new marketing opportunities for US food and agricultural product, as well as encouraging researches that may improve the marketing system.
Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP)
The SCBGP is another USDA rural development grants that focuses on the improvement of US specialty crops, which include tree nuts, dried fruits, nursery crops, etc. You can find more information for the grant program from the department or agency that is responsible for your State’s agriculture affairs.
The Farmers Market Promotion Program (FSMIP)
This program specifically aims to improve the direct market opportunities that may include the improvement and expansion of domestic farmer markets, agricultural programs, roadside stands, etc.
You can also use USDA rural development grant for housing assistance. In fact, the USDA provide a specific program for this. The homeownership opportunities are provided for people in rural areas that have low to moderate income. There are two major categories, which are the housing for individuals and housing for development opportunities. The Housing for Individuals is available for US citizen living in rural areas that has low income, are elderly or disabled. Nonprofit organizations, private corporations, or local government may apply for the Housing Development Opportunities to build or renovate multi-family housing complexes or other community-based facilities.
These are some of the grants available from the USDA. There are several other grants that we can’t possibly explain one by one in this post. For example, the USDA Business and Cooperative Programs offer several grants, which include:
- Rural Energy for America Program Grants (REAP)
- Repowering Assistance Program (Section 9004)
- Rural Business Enterprise Grant Program (RBEG)
- Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels Payments to Advanced Biofuel Producers (Section 9005)
As we have mentioned earlier in our post, the USDA provides various program assistance for people in rural areas. Aside of the grant opportunities, the USDA also offers technical assistance, research material support, educational material support, direct or guaranteed loans, housing program, etc. You can visit the USDA official site to learn more about these programs.
I am personally amazed by the dedication and commitment of the USDA to improve the standard of living for people in rural areas across the United States. Hopefully this post about USDA rural development grants can help you find what you need.
- United States Department of Agriculture : rurdev.usda.gov
- Grants for Nonprofits : Farm or Rural Development : staff.lib.msu.edu/harris23/grants/2farm.htm
- Specialty Crop Block Grant Program : ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/SCBGP
- Federal State Marketing Improvement Program : ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/FSMIP
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