Funds Available to Help SC Farmers Improve Food Safety
COLUMBIA – The South Carolina Department of Agriculture (SCDA) is pleased to announce an updated On-Farm Improvement Cost Share Program. Through USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant funding administered by SCDA, farmers who are covered or qualified exempt by the Produce Safety Rule can receive reimbursements up to $2,000 per year per farm for on-farm food safety improvements.
Examples of improvements that may be eligible for funding include handwashing stations, worker training resources and harvest bins. These measures help farms reduce the risk of foodborne illness in the fruits and vegetables they grow.
Our Produce Safety team recognizes that many South Carolina produce farms identify needed improvements but lack the money to implement changes. This program is designed to help farms make these improvements and comply with the requirements of the federal Produce Safety Rule.
The application has been updated from previous years to include not only covered produce farms but also farms that are Certified as Qualified Exempt from the Produce Safety Rule. Additionally, the application process is now more streamlined.
Please visit agriculture.sc.gov/grants to download the application, request an on-farm evaluation and learn about next steps.