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SC Dept. of Agriculture opens applications for food safety improvements

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) – The South Carolina Department of Agriculture on Friday introduced a program to fund on-farm food safety improvements.

The On-Farm Improvement Cost Share Program gives farmers as much as $2,000 per 12 months in reimbursements per farm for on-farm food safety improvements.

The program is roofed by way of the USDA’s Specialty Crop Block Grant funding for farmers who’re lined by the produce safety rule.

Officials say examples of eligible improvements embody handwashing stations, employee coaching assets and harvest bins. The improvements assist farms cut back the chance of foodborne sickness within the fruit and veggies they develop.

The state division of agriculture says they acknowledge many farms within the state determine wanted improvements however lack the cash wanted to implement adjustments. The program helps these farms adjust to federal produce safety necessities.

“I hope South Carolina produce farmers will explore this opportunity to upgrade their food safety protections,” South Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers stated. “These cost-share grants are an excellent use of taxpayer funds, as they support farms that are already demonstrating a commitment to food safety.”

Funds can be found on a first-come, first-serve foundation till depleted and require an on-farm analysis.

The deadline to use for reimbursement is Aug. 1, 2022.

More data on this system could be discovered on the South Carolina Department of Agriculture’s web site.

Copyright 2021 WCSC. All rights reserved.

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