AROUND MISSISSIPPI — The U.S. Department of Agriculture ( USDA) has selected 10 organizations in eight states to receive $1.4 million in grants to assist small, socially disadvantaged agricultural producers and cooperatives in rural areas.
This funding is being awarded through USDA Rural Development’s Small, Socially Disadvantaged Producer Grant Program, which is part of the department’s ongoing effort to expand outreach to rural residents to ensure that all communities have equal access to USDA programs and services. Funding is being awarded to cooperatives or associations of cooperatives where at least 75 percent of the governing board or membership has annual gross agricultural product sales of $250,000 or less in the last three years. Grants can be used for product improvements, business plan development or economic development activities.
In Mississippi, the Winston County Self-Help Cooperative has been awarded a $175,000 grant while the Mississippi Association of Cooperatives is to receive a $174,770 grant.