Last week, Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack announced an investment of $9.6 million across the country to help farmers, ranchers, processors, and rural businesses diversify the meat supply.


“We’re putting the needs of farmers, ranchers, and consumers at the forefront of our work to strengthen the resiliency of America’s food supply chain while promoting competition,” he said. “USDA is working on an approach to coordinate ways to deliver more opportunities and fairer prices for producers.” 


Vilsack added the funding is just the first of many steps.  He noted the goal of this effort is to give people access to healthier foods, eliminate bottlenecks in the food supply chain, and ultimately lower prices for consumers.  


Vilsack announced a total of 25 new investments to increase independent meat processing capacity.  The investments include 23 value-added Producer Grant Program awards totaling $3.9 million to help producer-owned companies process and market new products.  USDA is also investing $5.7 million in two companies to support food processing infrastructure.


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