FSMIP is funded by annual appropriations to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), USDA. Grants typically average about $60,000 each, with a maximum award of $200,000.00. FSMIP projects must be completed within three years.
MDAR has released the Request for Proposals for FY2017 projects, and proposals are due March 13, 2017. A webinar is scheduled on Tuesday February 21st from 12:30-1:30 PM, and on Thursday February 23rd from 12:30-1:30 PM. To sign up, or for more information about this opportunity, please contact Rebecca Davidson, FSMIP Coordinator, Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, 617-626-1744, Rebecca.Davidson@State.ma.us.
Click here to access the RFR.
FSMIP funds a wide range of applied research projects that address barriers, challenges, and opportunities in marketing, transportation, and distribution of U.S. food and agricultural products domestically and internationally. Eligible agricultural categories include livestock, livestock products, food and feed crops, fish and shellfish, horticulture, viticulture, apiary, and forest products and processed or manufactured products derived from such commodities.
Proposals may deal with barriers, challenges or opportunities manifesting at any stage of the marketing chain including direct, wholesale, and retail. Proposals may involve small, medium or large-scale agricultural entities but should potentially benefit multiple producers or agribusinesses. Proprietary proposals that benefit one business or individual will not be considered.
Proposals that address issues of importance at the State, regional or national level are appropriate for FSMIP. FSMIP also seeks unique proposals on a smaller scale that may serve as pilot projects or case studies useful as a model for others. Of particular interest are proposals that reflect a collaborative approach between the States, academia, the farm sector, and other appropriate entities and stakeholders.
FSMIP’s enabling legislation authorizes projects to:
- Determine the best methods for processing, preparing for market, packing, handling, transporting, storing, distributing, and marketing agricultural products.
- Determine the costs of marketing agricultural products in their various forms and through various channels.
- Assist in the development of more efficient marketing methods, practices, and facilities to bring about more efficient and orderly marketing and reduce the price spread between the producer and the consumer.
- Develop and improve standards of quality, condition, quantity, grade, and packaging in order to encourage uniformity and consistency in commercial practices.
- Eliminate artificial barriers to the free movement of agricultural products in commercial channels.
- Foster new/expanded domestic or foreign markets and new/expanded uses of agricultural products.
- Collect and disseminate marketing information to anticipate and meet consumer requirements, maintain farm income, and balance production and utilization.
All proposals that fall within one or more of the above categories will be considered. In addition, FSMIP encourages State agencies to submit proposals that address the following objectives:
- Assessing challenges and developing methods or practices that could assist local and regional producers in marketing agricultural products that meet the mandates of the Food and Drug Administration’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) 21 U.S.C. 2201.
- Creating wealth and economic opportunity in rural communities through the development of local and regional food systems and value-added agriculture.
For examples of past awarded FSMIP projects in Massachusetts and throughout other States click here.