COLUMBUS, OHIO — Through a collaboration between the Ohio Department of Development (ODD) and the Ohio Department of Agriculture, Ohio meat processors will have another opportunity to apply for a grant for expansion, training and certification, improved harvest services, and processing efficiencies.

“Ohio’s meat and poultry processors are such a critical part of keeping food on our tables and readily available at our markets for purchase,” said Dorothy Pelanda, director for the Ohio Department of Agriculture. “By making these funds available, we will all reap the benefits by having easier access to quality, wholesome meat and poultry products.”

Prior to this offer, the Meat Processing Grant Program initially allocated $10 million in funds to Ohio meat processors. On first day of the application period, 80 applications were filed seeking $18 million in funds. In total, Development received 145 applications, requesting more than $28 million in funds.

In April, legislature approved $15 million of additional funding so that all original eligible applications could be met. This round granted funds totaling $24,978,289 to 126 recipients.

On June 21, Development opened a third round of applications for the Ohio Meat Processing Grant. As applications are submitted, Development staff will review them and will close the application period once enough eligible requests are received to utilize remaining funds.

“These grants are critical in solving supply-chain issues and getting more food on store shelves and restaurant tables,”  ODD Director, Lydia Mihalik said. “Our staff is planning a quick turnaround on these applications so that meat processors can improve their operations as soon as possible.”

Eligible processors will receive a grant of up to $250,000, with half of the funds disbursed before projects are started and the other half awarded after the companies show that the initial funds were spent on eligible costs.

Licensed meat processors who have not yet received an award are eligible to apply.