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Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP)

How to apply to the Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program
Applications must be received by 4:00 pm on September 30th, 2022.

Laura J. Maul

The Details of Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP)

About this program for Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP)

The Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP) is a reimbursement grant program that supports produce and aquaculture operations that are looking to improve their food safety practices that work towards minimizing the risks of microbial contamination and food-borne illnesses while increasing market access. 

How to apply Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP)

Applications must be received by the Department by 4:00pm on Friday, September 30th, 2022. 

Email your application to: 

MDARGrants@mass.gov

Applications submitted via e-mail must be submitted through this e-mail address for consideration. Applications sent to another e-mail address will not be considered. 

All applicants are advised to allow adequate time for submission of their proposal by considering online impediments like internet traffic, internet connection speed, file size, and file volume. MDAR is not responsible for delays encountered by applicants or their agents, or for an applicants local hardware failures, such as computers or related networks, associated with an application compilation or submission. Applications submitted via e-mail will be deemed received by the time indicated by MDAR's Outlook system clock which is considered the official time of record and may be different than the time send by the applicant. 

Applications must be received by the Department by 4:00pm on Friday, September 30th, 2022. 

Mail your completed application with any additional documentation to: 

Laura J. Maul
Program Coordinator

Department of Agricultural Resources
30 Riverside Drive, Suite 202
Lakeville, MA  02347

All applicants are advised to allow adequate time for submission of their proposal by considering potential mail or shipping company delays. MDAR is not responsible for delays encountered by applicants or their agents, mail or package delivery issues associated with submission. 

 

Applications must be received by the Department by 4:00pm on Friday, September 30th, 2022. 

Hand deliver your completed application with any additional documentation by Friday, September 30th, 2022 to:

Laura J. Maul
Program Coordinator

Department of Agricultural Resources
30 Riverside Drive, Suite 202
Lakeville, MA  02347

Next steps for Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP)

  1. Determine your eligibility

    To be eligible for consideration under the Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program applicants must meet the following requirements:

    • Applicant must be a produce or aquaculture operation as defined by M.G.L. c. 128, § 1A that are principally and substantially engaged in agricultural production for commercial purposes;
    • Applicant must own the property upon which the project will be implemented or have a written lease agreement with the owner;
    • Are legally recognized entities within the Commonwealth and have the ability to enter a legally binding agreement with the Commonwealth;
    • Property must be in active agricultural use and managed as a commercial enterprise by the Applicant for at least the three (3) previous years to the date of the application. 
  2. Review the Request for Response (RFR)

    Before applying, please read the Request for Response (RFR). It provides a comprehensive summary of grant evaluation criteria, review timelines, award recipient expectations, eligible uses of grant funds, and examples of project ideas.

  3. Prepare the information you need to submit an application

    You will need to provide the following as part of your application: 

    • A summary of your produce or aquaculture business, details of the project you are proposing and the food safety benefits associated with the proposed project.
    • A description of the proposed project outcomes. 
    • Your work plan and timeline for the project.
    • An itemized project budget, including any matching funds.
    • Additional documentation in the form of quotes, maps, and balance of funding. If applicable, produce applicants should also include a copy of their Commonwealth Quality Program (CQP) certificate, and/or their Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) grower training course certificate. If applicable, aquaculture operations should also include a copy of their HACCP certification. 
  4. Submit your application

    Submit your application by one of methods listed above. Applications can be submitted by e-mail, in-person, or by mailing. 

    Applications must be received by the Department by 4:00pm on Friday, September 30th, 2022. 

  5. MDAR reviews your application

    MDAR will evaluate all applications submitted by the deadline and will makes award decisions based on the eligibility and evaluation criteria specified in the Request for Response (RFR). Estimated awards will be issued in November 2022.

  6. Sign a grant agreement with MDAR

    If your operation is selected to receive a grant MDAR will issue you an award letter and contract documents that specify the terms and conditions of your award. You will need to sign a Standard Contract with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and a Grant Agreement with MDAR before making any purchases related to the project.

  7. Project reimbursement

    At the conclusion of your awarded project submission of acceptable documentation is required for reimbursement. Documentation in the form cancelled checks, receipts, invoices, etc. for costs associated with approved projects must be submitted to MDAR and approved prior to reimbursement.  MDAR may publish information and images from your project on its web site or agency social media as examples for other operations engaging in similar projects.

    Unless your operation demonstrates significant need during the process, your grant funds will be distributed in one lump sum upon conclusion of your project. 

    Projects must be completed by June 30th, 2023. 

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Contact for Agricultural Food Safety Improvement Program (AFSIP)

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