Value added and regional food systems grant project awardees announced

LANSING — The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development recently announced 10 projects awarded funds under the competitive Value Added and Regional Food System Grant Program.

“Individually, these projects may appear modest, but the collective impact on Michigan jobs and industry growth is significant,” said MDARD Director Jamie Clover Adams. “We often forget that most people are employed by small businesses, so when we help support the innovations, expansions and developments of food producers throughout the state, it impacts individuals, communities and the entire state.”

The department received 85 proposals with requests totaling more than $8.3 million. Of those, MDARD awarded more than $1.1 million for the following 10 projects, which leverage more than $1.3 million in matching funds:

Farm to Freezer Detroit at $125,000. Installation of cutting-edge equipment to flash freeze Michigan grown fruits and vegetables.

Johnston’s Meat LLC in Peck at $125,000. Earn a U.S. Department of Agriculture “inspection through processing” certification and install new equipment that will increase the sale of value added meat products.

Todd Greiner Farms Packing LLC in Hart at $125,000. Install value added equipment for fresh, microwaveable and bagged asparagus.

Superior Honey Farm LLC in Chassell at $11,100. Expand processing and develop a new product line of creamed honey.

Snackwerks of Michigan LLC in Battle Creek at $125,000. Build a contract bakery food production line and enhance capability.

Byron Center Meats LLC in Byron Center at $124,700. Establish a federally-inspected mobile harvesting unit to enhance the marketing of Michigan livestock producers’ meats.

Wunsch Farms in Traverse City at $125,000. High-tech packing infrastructure to catalyze Michigan fresh sweet cherry industry.

Oomen Farms Ltd. in Hart at $125,000. Install equipment for value added processing of Michigan-grown carrots, zucchini and other vegetables to a more consumer and processor-ready form.

Mackinaw Trail Winery, Inc. in Petoskey at $110,000. Custom bottling service for “Tip of the Mitt” hard cider and sparkling wine producers utilizing apples, grapes, cherries and other fruits.

Stuart Family Organics LLC in Custer at $9,700. Launch a farm-to-customer, special transitory food unit in Western Michigan.

MDARD promotes and manages several competitive grant programs through the Agriculture Development Division. More about these programs can be found at www.michigan.gov/mdardgrants.

 

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Posted by Ashlyn Korienek

Ashlyn is the cops & courts and city reporter for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach her at (231) 398-3109 or akorienek@pioneergroup.com

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