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Very Small Meat and Poultry Processor Reimbursement Grant Program 

The Program's objective is to support the development and expansion of current or future very small meat and poultry processing operations in the Commonwealth by offering reimbursement grants to cover the cost associated with obtaining a grant of inspection from USDA Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS), opening a new very small meat and poultry processing operation, expanding the capacity of a current very small meat and poultry processing operation, or a combination of those purposes.

Guidelines & Uses

Grant reimbursement money is available for eligible costs associated with meeting the requirements to obtain a grant of inspection, opening a new very small meat and poultry processing operation, expanding the capacity of a current very small meat and poultry operation, or a combination of those purposes.

The following costs are eligible for reimbursement:

      1. Consulting or other technical support services that directly support the development and maintenance of programs required to operate under a grant of inspection.
      2. Professional employee training and educational services and programs that support the development and maintenance of programs to operate under a grant of inspection.  If a professional consultant is utilized, reasonable costs may be reimbursed, as determined by the department.
      3. Up to 85% of the purchase of meat or poultry slaughter or processing equipment or supplies. This does not include reimbursement of the costs of planning, erecting, repair or modification of a structure or building or repair of installation of roofing or other physical structure improvements.
      4. The purchase of equipment or supplies directly related to employee safety.

Grants cannot be used to pay or reimburse wages or salaries, any in-kind contribution to the project, or any part of the project already reimbursed by another Federal or State grant program.


Eligibility

An applicant may apply to receive reimbursement for eligible costs if the applicant is a very small meat and poultry processing operation and is either:

      • Currently operating under a grant of inspection.
      • Upon completion of the approved project, the applicant will obtain a grant of inspection.  An applicant must attest to this eligibility requirement under penalty of law to receive reimbursement. 

A "Very small meat and poultry processing operation." Is defined as: A person operating under a grant of inspection that meets the definition of "very small establishment" as described in 9 CFR 381.65(g)(1)(i) (relating to operations and procedures, generally).

Funding Opportunties

Grants are limited to no more than $100,000 per applicant.

If the Department receives eligible grant applications that collectively seek an amount exceeding the sum made available by the General Assembly, the Department may prorate individual grants by multiplying the grant amount sought by a fraction having the individual grant amount sought as the numerator and the total amount of grants sought as the denominator.

How to Apply

Grant applications must be submitted online through the PA Department of Community and Economic Development Electronic Single Application. Applications are due by at 5:00 PM on Monday, Sept. 26, 2022.

An application for a grant under this Program must contain the following information.  These items must be addressed in a separate document to be submitted through the PA DCED Electronic Single Application in the "Addenda Section":

      1. The applicant's name, the organization name, a business address and a telephone number.
      2. A list of corporate officers if the applicant is a corporation.
      3. The applicant's eligibility (describing whether they are currently a USDA Inspected operation or will obtain a grant of inspection by the completion of the proposed project).
      4. A detailed plan to include:
          • The process being undertaken to meet the requirements necessary to obtain a grant of inspection from USDA FSIS, if appliable.
          • An of outline of the overall project and materials being requested.
          • A line-item proposed budget.
          • Individual tasks required to complete the project.
          • A detailed timeline for completion of project tasks.
          • A detailed description of equipment or supplies required to complete the project, training, consulting, technical support, and other services utilized, as applicable.
          • A detailed list of costs, including training and equipment costs, as applicable.
          • An attestation signed by the applicant, stating the applicant is in compliance, or will be in compliance with the Federal Meat Inspection Act (Public Law 59-382, 21 U.S.C. § 601 et seq.) or Poultry Product Inspection Act (Public Law 85-172, 21 U.S.C. § 451 et seq.) upon completion of the approved project to maintain a grant of inspection.

The Department will review each application and supporting documentation submitted for completeness and accuracy. If an application is found to be incomplete or inaccurate, the Department may request additional documentation and may discontinue further processing of the application until the requested information is received. The department will evaluate an application on the basis of:

      1.  The ability of the applicant to complete the stated project within the stated timeline.
      2. The ability of the applicant to provide a detailed description of the project and project costs.
      3. The potential of the project to provide slaughter or meat or poultry processing capacity and services to this Commonwealth's livestock and poultry producers.
      4. The potential of the project to provide availability of Pennsylvania-produced meat or poultry products to consumers.

Additional Information

Full grant guidelines are published in the July 23 edition of the PA Bulletin.

Potential applicants with questions about eligibility should contact Joshua Scheinberg at (717) 919-0377 or jscheinber@pa.gov.