Hoeven: USDA Providing Grants for Small Meat Processors to Become Federally-Inspected

Senator Helped Secure Funding in Year-End Legislation to Expand Meat Processing Capacity

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven, Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committee and a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will make $55.2 million in competitive grants available to allow small meat processors to make improvements to become federally-inspected. This will improve meat processing capacity, helping to prevent disruptions in the nation’s food supply and giving ranchers more options for selling and marketing their products. The grants are made available under the Meat and Poultry Inspection Readiness Grant (MPIRG) program and were funded through the year-end legislation that Hoeven helped pass in December. Additional information can be found here

“We funded this grant program to help small meat processors access the federal inspection program, part of our broader efforts to improve market access and processing capacity to the benefit of both ranchers and consumers,” said Hoeven. “We encourage all interested North Dakota meat processors to apply.”

This funding aligns with Hoeven’s efforts to ensure ranchers have access to more competitive markets and to improve fairness and transparency in the beef industry. Among other efforts, the senator recently:

  • Helped introduce bipartisan legislation to:
    • Expand ranchers’ ability to provide more locally-produced meat to consumers by utilizing custom slaughterhouses.
    • Require a minimum of 50 percent of a meat packer’s weekly volume of beef slaughter be purchased on the open or spot market. This legislation is sponsored by Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Jon Tester (D-Mont.).