Arkansas Department of Agriculture to Receive $5.6 Million from the USDA Regional Food Systems Initiative

The Arkansas Department of Agriculture (Department) is receiving $5.6 million from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for the Resilient Food Systems Infrastructure (RFSI) program to improve food supply chain operations and strengthen local food systems throughout the state.
Eligible entities include agricultural producers, processors, nonprofit organizations, local governments, tribal governments, and institutions. For complete details on eligible institutions, go to ScopeandRequirements.pdf.
The RFSI program will focus on funding activities that:
Improve the middle of the supply chain operations.Expand capacity for processing, aggregation, and distribution of agricultural products to create more and better markets for producers.Modernize manufacturing, tracking, storage, and information technology systems.Enhance worker safety through the adoption of new technologies or investment in equipment or facility improvements.Improve the capacity of entities to comply with federal, state, and local food safety requirements.Improve operations through training opportunities.Support the construction of a new facility.Modernize or expand an existing facility (including expansion and modifications to existing buildings and/or construction of new buildings at existing facilities). Support the construction of wastewater management structures.Modernize processing and manufacturing equipment.Develop, customize, or install equipment that reduces greenhouse gas emissions, increases efficiency in water use, improves air and/or water quality, and/or meets one or more of USDA’s climate action goals.
The Department is developing a state plan to establish the priorities for this funding and is seeking feedback from the public for the development of this plan. Interested parties are invited to submit comments at ResilientFoodSystemsInfrastructureSurvey PublicComment until August 7, 2023.
Additional information on the RFSI program can be found at /grants/rfsi.
The Arkansas Department of Agriculture is dedicated to the development and implementation of policies and programs for Arkansas agriculture, forestry, and natural resources to keep its farmers and ranchers competitive in national and international markets while conserving natural resources and ensuring safe food, fiber, and forest products for the citizens of the state and nation. Visit The Arkansas Department of Agriculture offers its programs to all eligible persons regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability and is an Equal Opportunity Employer.