Ag News

Federal Funding supports meat processing, education progrrams

by Compiled by Georgia Farm Bureau

Posted on Mar 22, 2023 at 0:00 AM

Fort Valley State University will be able to establish a new poultry science major, and the University of Georgia’s poultry science program will make upgrades to its labs and equipment with $4 million in new funding announced on March 13. On March 6 the USDA announced $7.5 million in new funding to help expand domestic meat processing capabilities through Augusta-based CSRA Business Lending.

On March 13, Sen. Jon Ossoff visited Fort Valley State University (FVSU) to brief students and leaders on the $4 million approved for FVSU and the University of Georgia to help train the next generation of Georgia’s poultry farmers and scientists.

The new resources, passed with bipartisan support in Congress, will help FVSU establish a poultry science major and purchase new equipment for their students —providing a state-of-the-art learning environment for students interested in poultry careers.

The resources will also help UGA upgrade technology and lab equipment for its agricultural education programs.

Georgia is the nation’s leading poultry-producing state, and poultry is a multibillion-dollar sector in the state, however, the poultry sector is facing an aging workforce, which is creating concerns about meeting future demand.

Meanwhile, Sens. Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock, along with Reps. Rick Allen, Sanford Bishop, Austin Scott and David Scott, celebrated $7.5 million in new funding for expansion of in-state meat processing announced on March 6 by the USDA.

The money will boost Georgia’s meat processing industry and create new jobs in rural communities. CSRA Business Lending, which provides loans to rural small businesses and would receive an additional $7.5 million in funding from the USDA after an initial $7.5 million secured by Georgia’s congressional delegation in November 2022.

New federal funding will expand domestic meat processing capacity, creating jobs in rural counties, increasing competition, lowering grocery costs, and strengthening food supply chains.

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