MANHATTAN, Kan. — The Kansas Department of Agriculture has funds available for reimbursement to Kansas specialty crop growers who attend an educational conference with a primary focus on specialty crops. Qualifying conferences may include sessions about production practices, specialized equipment and technology, pest and disease management, specialty crop marketing practices, or business principles for specialty crop producers.
Applicants who apply for the reimbursement will be required to attend the conference between December 2020 and June 2021 and to complete surveys before, immediately after and six months post-conference prior to payment being issued. Conferences not eligible will include those within the state of Kansas and the Great Plains Growers Conference. KDA will reimburse Kansas specialty crop growers up to $850 each in order to offset the cost of their conference registration, mileage/flights, hotel, meals, etc. The award is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The deadline for application is December 18, 2020.
Examples of conferences that may be eligible for applicants to attend include, but are not limited to:
- Great Lakes Expo Fruit, Vegetable, and Farm Market, December 8-10, 2020, Virtual
- Southeast Regional Fruit & Vegetable Conference, January 5-7, 2021, Virtual
- North American Strawberry Growers Association Conference, January 18-20, 2021, Virtual
- Unified Wine & Grape Symposium, January 26-29, 2021, Sacramento, California
- American Society for Enology and Viticulture National Conference, June 21-24, 2021, Monterey, California
This program is made possible by a U.S. Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant (SCBG). The SCBG makes funds available to state departments of agriculture solely to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops. According to USDA, specialty crops are defined as “fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture.”
This grant fits KDA’s mission to provide an environment that enhances and encourages economic growth of the agriculture industry and the Kansas economy.
For application details, go to the KDA website at agriculture.ks.gov/grants. Questions should be directed to Sammy Gleason, From the Land of Kansas program coordinator, at 785-564-6755 or Sammy.Gleason@ks.gov.