More than $223 million in grants and loans will increase competition and economic opportunity for meat and poultry processors and producers across the country, and help reduce costs for working families
OMAHA, November 2, 2022 – United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the Biden-Harris administration is investing $73 million in 21 grant projects in the first round of the Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program (MPPEP). MPPEP is responding to President Biden’s call to increase competition across the economy to reduce costs for American families. Today’s announcement will increase meat and poultry processing capacity, which in turn will increase competition, support producer incomes and strengthen the food supply chain to reduce costs for producers. working families and create jobs and economic opportunities in rural areas. In addition, the Authority is investing $75 million in eight projects under the Meat and Poultry Intermediate Loan Program, as well as more than $75 million in four meat and poultry projects in the under the Food Supply Chain Guaranteed Loan Scheme.
These announcements support the Biden-Harris Administration’s Action Plan for a Fairer, More Competitive, and Resilient Meat and Poultry Supply Chain, which devotes resources to expanding independent processing capacity. As President Biden Underline earlier this year, the creation of fairer markets and more opportunities for family farmers is helping to lower prices at the grocery store.
“Since President Biden made a commitment earlier this year, the USDA has worked tirelessly to give farmers and ranchers a fair chance to compete in the marketplace, which in turn helps reduce food costs to the American people,” the agriculture secretary said. Tom Vilsak. “By launching independent processing projects and increasing processing capacity, these investments are creating more opportunities for farmers and ranchers to get a fair price, while strengthening supply chains, delivering more food produced closer to home for families, expanding economic opportunities and creating jobs in rural America.”
The USDA is achieving the multi-pronged goals of these investments:
- Support producer-driven business models: Montana Premium Processing Cooperative (MPPC)a start-up cooperative, created in partnership with the Montana Farmers Union and Farmers Union Industries, will use MPPEP funds to offer independent producers in Montana an option for a local USDA-inspected meat processing facility in an area that is currently not federally inspected. Processing.
- Strengthening local and regional food systems: Vermont Livestock Slaughtering and Processing connects hundreds of Vermont and Northeast farmers with the individuals, families, schools and businesses they supply. Thanks to their MPPEP investment, they are now ready to revitalize and modernize their multi-species facility, tripling their throughput.
- Reduce barriers to treatment: Cutting-edge meat company, a plant in Leakesville, Mississippi, processes pork and beef for producers in Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and Florida. With this investment, they will significantly increase their capacity and reduce the six-month processing backlog producers are currently facing.
- Large-scale competition: Greater Omaha Packing in Omaha, Nebraska, will open new opportunities for cattle producers by increasing their beef processing capacity by 700 head per day. The project will also support 275 additional jobs.
- Restoring jobs in rural areas: pure grassland, recently purchased a shuttered poultry plant in Charles City, Iowa, with the goal of returning hundreds of jobs to the small rural community and increasing poultry processing in the upper Midwest. The project sources directly from producers in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa, who are also shareholders and co-owners of the company.
- Empowerment of family businesses: New Stockton Poultry in Stockton, Calif., is a family-run business that sources and processes specialty chickens to meet demand within diverse immigrant communities and beyond.
The investments announced today are part of a series of financial assistance tools to help producers and lenders increase their capacity in the food supply chain.
The MPPEP was designed to support capacity expansion projects in concert with other private and public financing tools. Today’s announcement is the first round of funding made available under MPEPP Phase I. Further announcements are expected in the coming weeks. The USDA will also soon begin receiving applications for a new phase of deployment of an additional $225 million, for a total of up to $375 million, to provide surge funding for independent processing plant projects. that meet a demonstrated need for more diverse processing capability. For more information on the MPPEP, see the Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program Page.
The Meat and Poultry Intermediate Loan Program (MPILP) provides grants to not-for-profit intermediary lenders who are financing – or planning to finance – the start-up, expansion or operation of a slaughterhouse or other meat and poultry processing. MPILP’s goal is to strengthen the financing system for independent meat processors and create a more resilient, diverse, and secure U.S. food supply chain. In the first round of MPILP, $75 million was awarded to eight lenders in seven states. Applications for the second round ($125 million) are currently being accepted and are due December 31, 2022.
Under the Food Supply Chain Guaranteed Loan Program (FSCGLP), the USDA partners with lenders to guarantee loans to help eligible entities develop meat processing and poultry and strengthen the US food supply chain. Lenders provide loans to eligible cooperatives, for-profit corporations, non-profits, tribal communities, government agencies, and rural and urban dwellers. Since the launch of the FSCGLP in December 2021, more than $250 million in loans have been guaranteed for projects in the middle of the food supply chain. Four of them, announced today and totaling more than $75 million, are aimed at meat and poultry processors.
For a complete list of rewards under these programs, visit: www.rd.usda.gov/sites/default/files/11-02-2022-Food-Systems-Transformation-Chart-OSEC.pdf (PDF, 211 KB)
Today’s announcement is one of several actions the USDA is taking to increase processing capacity and increase competition in meat and poultry processing to make agricultural markets more accessible, fair , competitive and resilient, and builds on the Department’s efforts to transform the country’s food system. Additional information about all of these programs is available at www.usda.gov/meat.
The USDA touches the lives of all Americans every day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris administration, the USDA is transforming the U.S. food system with a greater emphasis on more resilient local and regional food production, promoting competition and fairer markets for all producers, ensuring the access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and income streams for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and capacity clean energy in rural America, and committing to equity across the department by removing systemic barriers and creating a workforce that is more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
The USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.