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BISMARCK – The North Dakota Meat Processing Plant Cost-Share Program, initiated earlier this year to provide cost-share assistance to North Dakota meat processing plants, is getting more funding after the state Emergency Commission unanimously approved an additional $2.7 million for the program last week with funding from the coronavirus relief bill.

The program was started last month with $1.3 million in funding from the coronavirus relief bill to help state-inspected and custom exempt meat processing plants upgrade their facilities and equipment to meet increased demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new round of funding brings the total for the program to $4 million and adds eligibility for North Dakota federally-inspected meat processing plants.

“The pandemic caused supply chain impacts in the meat processing industry and this funding will bring more processing capability to the state,” Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said. “The additional funding will help even more plants upgrade facilities and equipment to create efficiencies that will allow them to increase capacity and ultimately will increase the local availability of meat.”

Some of the eligible improvements could include:

  • Purchase of equipment such as grinders, stuffers or other processing equipment
  • Rooms or equipment to increase slaughter capacity such as coolers and freezers

The program will reimburse plants a portion of expenses dependent on the total amount of eligible applications received and approved through the program. Letters and applications were mailed to all current North Dakota federal meat processing plants. State-inspected and custom exempt meat processing plants need not reapply if they have already submitted an application.

Additional information is available by contacting Bradley Dean, agricultural development specialist, at 701-955-0181 or bdean@nd.gov.

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