W.Va. DA requests applications for specialty crop grants

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W.Va. DA requests applications for specialty crop grants
Specialty crops are the future of the West Virginia agriculture, says its commissioner of agriculture. (Photo: Paige Cody)

The W.Va. Department of Agriculture through January 19, 2021, is accepting applications for U.S. Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grants.

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Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt says specialty crops are the future of agriculture in the Mountain State and anticipates West Virginia will receive approximately $270,000 from the federal government from which multiple grants will be awarded.

“Niche, specialty markets are West Virginia’s future,” Leonhardt says of the disbursement.

“Specialty-crop funding allows West Virginia agriculture commodities to explore and enhance their impact on our state’s economy."

The awards must be used to enhance the production, processing, and consumption of specialty crops within West Virginia, Leonhardt said.

Recipients have three years to plan, implement, and gather data on their respective projects.

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"The department is looking for projects that highlight how innovative programs and rural development groups can help West Virginia agriculture expand,” the commissioner said.

Specialty crops are defined as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops, including floriculture.

The program is funded by the USDA and administered by the WVDA.

Applications may be found at

For more information, contact Crescent Gallagher at cgallagher@wvda.us or 304-558-3708.


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