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California leads nation in specialty crop block grants

California led the nation with funding from the latest round of USDA specialty crop block grants, receiving $18 million of the $52 million issued nationwide.

SACRAMENTO — The Golden State led the nation in specialty crop block grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, receiving more than $18 million of the $52 million recently awarded nationwide.

The grant program assists global marketing efforts for fruit, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture and nursery crops including floriculture, the California Department of Food and Agriculture explained.

Market enhancement, agriculture education, nutrition and research proposals were solicited and chosen in a competitive grant process, the CDFA explained in a news release.

Among the 64 projects funded in California were the development of agritourism associations to enhance rural economies and promote specialty crops, and the creation of online irrigation nitrogen management tools for cool-season vegetables, according to the CDFA.

For more information about the grants, visit www.cdfa.ca.gov/grants .



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