September 9, 2021

Contact: David Schuller

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced two new grant programs intended to provide financial assistance for farmers and ranchers as they adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic in the workplace.

The grant programs, Pandemic Response and Safety (PRS) Grant and Seafood Pandemic Response Safety (SPRS) Block Grant, aim to provide assistance to agricultural operations in certain commodity areas, including small scale specialty crop producers and processors, shellfish, aquaculture and other select producers, meat and other processors, distributors, farmers markets and seafood facilities.

“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, our farming community recognized their role as essential workers and made worker safety a priority,” said Rob Larew, President, National Farmers Union, “They adapted their work environments through staggered schedules, provided PPE and onsite testing, retrofitted their facilities to provide social distancing measures and more.”

“These changes were necessary to protect their workforce, but came at a high expense,” Larew added. “We are thankful the American Rescue Plan provided funding for this purpose and thank the Secretary for implementing this grant program.”

The PRS grant will be funded at $650 million and the SPRS block grant will be funded at $50 million. Applications will be available on September 23rd.

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National Farmers Union advocates on behalf of nearly 200,000 American farm families and their communities. We envision a world in which farm families and their communities are respected, valued, and enjoy economic prosperity and social justice.

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