Diaz-Balart: USDA Grant Will Help Florida’s Farmers, Ranchers, and Growers as They Rebuild from Irma
MIAMI – Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25), a member of the House Specialty Crops Caucus, issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Florida was a recipient of $4.35 million through its Specialty Crop Block Grant program. This program aims to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops through work such as research and agricultural extension activities.
“Florida's agriculture industry was battered during Hurricane Irma last year and continues to rebuild after the storm. It is estimated the Sunshine State's agriculture industry has $2.5 billion in damages as a result of the 2017 hurricane season. Damages to citrus, Florida's iconic crop, total $760 million alone. At a time when the citrus industry continues to combat issues beyond the effects of the storm, such as citrus greening, this money is essential. Beyond citrus, this funding will go a long way towards getting our state’s premier agricultural sector back on its feet. I thank Secretary Perdue for recognizing the hard work of our farmers, ranchers, and growers, and I look forward to continue working with him to support them on their road to recovery.”
USDA’s Specialty Crop Block Grant program is funded through the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture. Diaz-Balart, who is a senior member of the House Committee on Appropriations, has voted to support Florida’s farmers, ranchers, and growers since he joined the Committee in 2012.