Equipment grants available for access to healthy foods

Funding for equipment that increases availability and access to affordable, nutritious and culturally appropriate food to underserved communities is now available, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture announced.

MDA is now accepting applications for the 2020 Good Food Access Program (GFAP) Equipment and Physical Improvement Grants.

A total of $280,000 is available to help grocery stores and small food retailers purchase equipment or make physical improvements that will allow them to stock more fresh foods, including produce. Projects must be located in or serve Census-designated food deserts or low- and moderate-income communities with limited access to supermarkets.

This year, preference will be given to retailers adversely affected by COVID-19 and retailers serving areas affected by civil unrest during the period of May 25 through June 5.

Potential projects may include the purchase of shelving, mobile food trucks, permanent infrastructure at farmers’ markets, architectural work, and display or storage coolers and freezers, as well as the costs associated with installation. Other projects may also be considered.

Grocery stores and small food retailers like corner stores, mobile markets and farmers markets, may apply. Multi-site proposals are encouraged. Grant awards may range from $2,500 to $50,000, and up to 50 percent of the award may be requested in advance. Applications are due by 4 p.m. on Nov. 19, 2020.

For more information, including the online application, visit the GFAP Equipment Grant website.

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