Durbin Announces Nearly $655,000 in Farm Bill Funding To Support Illinois Agriculture

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded the Illinois Department of Agriculture a $654,970 grant through the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (SCBG). Today’s funding will be used to support Illinois agriculture projects that enhance food safety programs, expand access to specialty crops in underserved communities, establish local and regional fresh food systems, and promote local crop production.


“The federal funding announced today will support hard-working Illinois farmers by raising awareness about the benefits of locally grown crops. Likewise, it will help Illinois families make healthy choices at the dinner table by expanding their access to fresh, locally grown foods,” Durbin said.


Today, USDA announced approximately $66 million in funds for the SCBG program. Funding was made available through the 2014 Farm Bill, which increased mandatory funding for programs like SCBG that support local foods. Last year, the SCBG made 13 awards totaling $540,000 in support to Illinois growers. These programs help support small producers who support local, sustainable food economies, while also encouraging healthy eating. A description of the projects funded last year through SCBG is available here.