Rahall Announces Federal Funding for W.Va. Agricultural Projects

Press Release

Date: Oct. 2, 2014
Location: Beckley, WV

U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.) Thursday announced $270,000 in grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to assist West Virginia's specialty crop growers.

"West Virginia's farmers have a real opportunity to benefit from the current and growing trend of buying locally grown foods," said Rep. Rahall. "I'm pleased to be able to announce this Federal funding to help a wide range of specialty farmers all across our state take advantage this expanding market."

The funding was awarded through the USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant Program to the West Virginia Department of Agriculture for 14 projects, including:

$17,350 to partner with West Virginia University to assess opportunities for maple syrup production on abandoned mine land

$7,200 for the West Virginia Maple Syrup Producers Association to increase syrup production

$10,000 to partner with the Kanawha Institute for Social Research & Action (KISRA) for farm expansion research

$16,000 to partner with West Virginia State University to improve profitability and productivity in high-tunnel vegetable production

$43,200 to collaborate with Potomac State University and West Virginia University to increase the production of root crops

$14,000 to partner with West Virginia State University to increase pecan production

$10,000 to partner with the Ritchie County Farmers Market Association to increase small fruit crop production

$16,000 to partner with the Charleston Area Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture Entrepreneurs (SAGE) education on specialty crops

$12,000 to partner with Eastern West Virginia Community Action Agency to increase the amount of specialty crops grown in the Tygart Valley

$25,000 to partner with Grow Ohio Valley to increase production of specialty crops across the Upper Ohio Valley

$51,500 to increase education about reducing the risk of food-borne illnesses

$9,500 to partner with West Virginia Queen Producers Association to increase honey production of West Virginia beekeepers

$15,000 to partner with West Virginia Veterans to Agriculture to increase the number of honey producers

$3,100 to partner with West Central Beekeepers Association to increase the quantity of honey production, expanding the availability of the wildflower food source to the local honey bee population.