Agriculture Grant Opportunities Farm Energy Program As part of its continued efforts to grow Rhode Island's green economy, the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) has announced $600,000 will be available to help local farmers "green" their operations and benefit from the related energy and cost savings. The new Rhode Island Farm Energy Program supports energy efficiency projects and helps farmers transition to renewable power. For more information, please see the FEP page. Local Agriculture and Seafood Act (LASA) Grants Program The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, Division of Agriculture administers the Local Agriculture and Seafood Act Grants Program. The goal of the program, which was established by the Local Agriculture and Seafood Act (LASA) of 2012, is to support the growth, development, and marketing of local food and seafood in Rhode Island. It is made possible by funding from the State of Rhode Island, and matching funds from the Henry P. Kendall Foundation, the van Beuren Charitable Foundation, and the Rhode Island Foundation. This unique and unprecedented public-private partnership will provide grants intended to directly benefit and strengthen the local food system in Rhode Island. For more information, please see the LASA page. Organic Certification Cost Share Reimbursement Certified organic operations in Rhode Island may apply for USDA organic certification cost share reimbursement through RIDEM Division of Agriculture annually when funds become available and after forms and information have been updated: http://www.dem.ri.gov/programs/agriculture/documents/orgcossh.pdf. The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) Kent County office also has accepted applications for organic certification cost share reimbursement—please contact FSA for current program status. Required FSA forms and contact information are online at: https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/occsp/. RI Produce Safety Improvement Grants Rhode Island Produce Safety Improvement Grants help Rhode Island produce growers implement on-farm food safety practices, transition to compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, and meet market demands for on-farm food safety. This grant round allows for up to $35,000 of funding in grant opportunities to assist eligible Rhode Island farmers and food businesses with projects that have goals to improve quality, efficiency, and food safety. For more information, please see the Specialty Crop Block Grant – Mini Grant Program webpage. Specialty Crop Block Grant Program The RIDEM/Division of Agriculture is pleased to announce the availability of Farm Viability grant funds to enhance the Competitiveness of Specialty Crops grown in Rhode Island. Specialty crops are defined by this federally supported program as fruits and vegetables, dried fruit, tree nuts, and nursery crops, including floriculture such as Christmas Trees, cut flowers, honey, hops, and turf grass production. Examples of enhancing the market competitiveness of specialty crops include, but are not limited to Research, promotion, marketing, nutrition, trade enhancement, food safety, food security, plant health programs, education, "buy local" programs, increased consumption, increased innovation, improved efficiency and reduced costs of distribution systems, environmental concerns and conservation, product development, and developing cooperatives. For more information, please see the SCBGP page.