South Dakota: Funds Available for Specialty Crop Advancement

News Article -

The South Dakota Department of Agriculture (SDDA) announces that funds are available for Specialty Crop Block Grants.

The funds can be used for marketing, promotion, research, food safety, nutrition, distribution and best management practices to advance the specialty crop industry. Specialty crops are generally defined as fruits, nuts, vegetables, honey and some turf and ornamental crops. A full list of specialty crops is also available on the SDDA website

“Specialty crops in South Dakota provide opportunities for small producers and local food systems offering fresh products and unique value-added businesses. Specialty crops can help round-out development in communities of all sizes across the state,” said South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch. “These funds help us support this growing niche of South Dakota agriculture.”

Stakeholders have identified this year’s top priorities as enhancing the competitiveness of specialty crops through increased sales, increased consumption and sustainable practices of specialty crop production. The deadline for applications is May 2, 2016. Details explaining the application are available at

Applications should be submitted via email to and four printed copies including an original must be mailed to SDDA at 523 E Capitol Avenue, Pierre, SD 57501.

For additional information please contact Bob Weyrich, program manager, at 605.431.8002 or visit him at SDDA’s Western Ag Development Office at 711 North Creek Drive, Rapid City, SD.

Agriculture is a major contributor to South Dakota’s economy, generating $25.6 billion in annual economic activity and employing over 115,000 South Dakotans. The South Dakota Department of Agriculture's mission is to promote, protect, preserve and improve this industry for today and tomorrow. Visit us online at or find us on Facebook and Twitter.

Contact Information

Jody Heemstra