State funding for specialty crops

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By The Staff

New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) announced today that funding will be available under the New Mexico Specialty Crops Program. Funds are available to New Mexico organizations and individuals that have a long-term commitment to improving the economic viability of New Mexico’s rural economy or have projects with a significant value-added potential.

Dr. I. Miley Gonzales, secretary of agriculture, stated, “NMDA wants to help you grow and sell high-value agricultural products.” The Specialty Crops Program provides limited funding for marketing projects, promotional activities, and specialty crop production demonstrations for high-value specialty crops. High-value products are agricultural crops which have a value-added component, are unique, provide alternatives to existing crops, promote sustainable development, and have potential to enhance New Mexico’s rural economy.

The Specialty Crops funding can be used to explore new ideas for your company or organization. According to Edward Avalos, director of the Marketing and Development Division, applicants have successfully used these funds to develop markets, advertise and promote, print maps and directories, conduct marketing surveys, develop farmers’ markets, and fund production demonstrations for new directions in growing and processing agricultural products.

There is a May 15 deadline to submit an application for funding. For additional information or to receive the application guidelines by mail, please contact Craig Mapel at (505) 852-3088 or Edward Avalos at (575) 646-4929 or go to the NMDA web page at http://www.nmda.nmsu.edu to print the application guidelines.