West Virginia Receives More Than $280,000 in Specialty Crop Block Grants

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Six West Virginia projects will share in $284,618.10 of federal funding under the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBGP) in 2021. These projects were chosen from ten West Virginia organizations, agencies and institutions who requested a total of $404,610. Recipients must use the federal funding to enhance the production, processing and consumption of specialty crops in West Virginia and have two years to plan, implement and gather data on their respective projects.

“The projects funded this year all focus on how to further develop West Virginia agricultural industries. Each one will evaluate specific niches to help our farmers tap into potential new markets. We are excited to see the impact these projects will have,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt.

The FY21 Special Crop Block Grant awards are as follows:

  • Future Generations University (Statewide)- $49,941:
    • “Development of a Walnut Sap Spout”
  • West Virginia University (WVU) Research Corporation (Statewide)-$73,473:
    • “Risk Assessment and Management of Spotted Lanternfly”
  • West Virginia University (WVU) Research Corporation (Statewide) – $9,876:
    • “Developing a Farmers’ Market Price Reporting System”
  • West Virginia Military Authority (Statewide-Greater Charleston – Huntington Metro)- $36,324:
    • “Determining Market Potential of Dried Vegetables and Herbs by Veterans and Military Families”
  • Grow Ohio Valley Inc (Northern Panhandle)- $72,706:
    • “D4P: Diversified Protected Perennial Production Plot: A Perennial Crop Program for the Northern Panhandle”
  • High Rocks Educational Corp (Pocahontas County)- $28,650:
    • “Examining Kale Yield and Sales Based on Varieties and Cabbage Looper Control Methods in WV”

The USDA awarded $72.9 million to 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the five U.S. territories. Specialty crops are defined as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops, including floriculture.

For more information, contact Crescent Gallagher at cgallagher@wvda.us or 304-558-3709.

The West Virginia Department of Agriculture protects plant, animal and human health through a variety of scientific, regulatory and consumer protection programs. The Commissioner of Agriculture is one of six statewide elected officials who sits on the Board of Public Works.