Securing Local Food Systems Grants Available
The Kansas Department of Commerce has announced that Economic Development and Connectivity Coronavirus Relieve Grants are now available. Grant applications will open Wednesday, August 19, 2020. The Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas (SPARK) Task Force has approved more than $130 million in relief funding for economic development and connectivity in the state. These dollars are being awarded in the form of grants to eligible Kansas businesses.
Among the 10 grant programs being offered, $9 million has been allocated to the Securing Local Food Systems grant program. This grant program intends to support Kansas meat processing facilities, food processors, food banks, local direct-to-consumer producers and retail outlets to address food for human consumption supply chain disruptions as a result of the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Since March, demand for locally sourced meat and specialty crops have spiked creating both opportunities and challenges to produce and distribute food safely to consumers. This funding comes at a time when farms and other food businesses are shifting to meet the change in demand and safety.
The grants cover expenses incurred throughout COVID-19 and future expenses businesses may experience in response to the pandemic. Examples of expenses the Local Food Systems grant may cover include technology to bring sales online, cold storage capacity expansion, processing equipment, packaging, and more.
Other relevant grants for farms, ranches, and food businesses include, Small Business Working Capital and PPE Procurement grants. Businesses can apply for funds from more than one grant program.
All grants will be distributed on a first come first serve basis until funds are depleted so businesses are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.
The online application form doesn’t offer an option to save your work, so the template below can be used for drafting the answers to each field before the portal opens for submissions on Wednesday, Aug. 19.
SPARK Local Food Application Fields
*Courtesy of Sheila Robertson (Franklin County).
Specific questions can be directed to: BackToBusiness@ks.gov
For information on all grant programs, FAQs, and how to apply visit:https://www.kansascommerce.gov/covidrelief/