FSIS/Rural Development offer options for small processors
USDA agency officials with the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and Rural Development have met online with lenders and small meat processors to offer support through some of their programs.
FSIS Administrator Paul Kiecker says they have nearly 150 enforcement officers who not only help processors obtain a federal grant for inspection but offer outreach, “For small businesses looking to apply for a federal grant of inspection we also have coordinators in every district office who are available to help you through the application process.”
Kiecker says 90% of the 65-hundred establishments they regulate are either small are very small. With increased demand during the pandemic, many smaller processors are looking to expand to meet that demand.
Bette Brand is USDA Rural Development Administrator says, “If you’re a lender and if a small meat producer or processor comes to you for help we want you to do business with them. And I would love it if Rural Development, THE Rural Development state office is your very first phone call.”
Among the Rural Development program offerings are the Renewable Energy for America Program, or REAP, and the Business and Industries CARES program which offers guarantees to lenders for their loans to rural businesses and agricultural producers.