The state of Indiana is making $4 million in federal CARES Act funding available to help local and small meat processors remain viable and safe for workers.
Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch says the money, in the form of an economic development grant, was created to offset the impact of COVID-19 on small shops that process livestock.
“These CARES Act funds will go a long way in shoring up our food supply chain by increasing resilience at our processors and helping to lessen processing wait times for both farmers and consumers,” said Bruce Kettler, Indiana State Department of Agriculture director, whose office will administer the funds.
National food supply chain disruptions during the global pandemic further highlighted Indiana’s need to support and expand regional small-scale facilities.
Large processors, such as Tyson’s plant in Logansport and Indiana Packers in Delphi, were closed for several weeks this summer, as they dealt with an outbreak of COVID-19 among workers.
Those closings forced livestock producers to find other places to have market-ready swine processed.
“Our agricultural community has been through many difficult situations the last few months,” said Kettler.
ISDA says the program would reimburse up to 50% of eligible expenses for licensed processing shops, with a maximum award of $150,000.
These funds can be used for equipment purchases, personal protective equipment, food safety equipment, facility upgrades, employee training and a variety of other necessities.
Click here to view the grant guidelines.