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USDA Awards $300 Million to Diversify Export Markets for U.S. Agriculture

WASHINGTON, May 21, 2024 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture is allocating $300 million to 66 U.S. organizations, under the new Regional Agricultural Promotion Program (RAPP), to build demand for American food and farm exports in high-potential markets around the globe.

Secretary Vilsack launched RAPP in October 2023, authorizing $1.2 billion in Commodity Credit Corporation funding to help U.S. exporters expand their customer base beyond traditional and established markets, focusing on regions such as Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and South and Southeast Asia, where consumer demand and purchasing power are growing.

“USDA and the entire Biden-Harris Administration are focused on creating more, new and better markets for U.S. producers and agribusinesses, and exports are a critical part of that effort,” Vilsack said. “By enabling U.S. exporters to expand their footprint in diverse and dynamic new markets, RAPP will help make them more competitive and resilient in an increasingly volatile global trading environment. We know the potential is out there, but it takes time and money to grow new markets. USDA is pleased to be able to provide the start-up capital to help tap into these opportunities, because if we are serious about reversing the decline of small and mid-sized farms, and building wealth that stays in rural communities, it’s crucial that we create and sustain diverse market opportunities abroad as well as at home.”

The initial round of RAPP funding will help recipient organizations carry out hundreds of projects encompassing a wide variety of products and markets. For example:

  • The Cranberry Institute plans to conduct trade education seminars and other consumer-focused activities to target export opportunities in India, Brazil, Colombia and Southeast Asia.
  • The Southern Forest Products Association is targeting new market opportunities for Southern yellow pine products throughout the Caribbean region through educational seminars and promotional events.
  • The Hazelnut Marketing Board will conduct market research and trade missions to facilitate support market development in several African countries.
  • The U.S. Dairy Export Council plans to expand its presence in Africa by utilizing RAPP funding to better understand and develop dairy import regulations and regulatory frameworks in many markets.
  • The U.S. Meat Export Federation plans to expand its export efforts to new markets in the ASEAN region and throughout Africa, as well as enhance its investment in the convenience store segment in South Korea, Central America and Colombia.
  • The Brewers Association will tap into the burgeoning craft beer scene in Southeast Asia, taking part in the region’s premier brewing trade show and festival and also bringing buyers from the region to the top trade shows in the United States.

To view the complete list of organizations that received RAPP funding, please visit the following link: FY 2024 RAPP Funding Allocations.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.

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