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Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety Block Grant


The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is seeking applications for the Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety Block Grant program to support the seafood processing sector. Funded through the United States Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service, this program provides relief and assistance to eligible seafood processing facilities and processing vessels in response to the ongoing impacts from COVID-19. The grants will provide cost reimbursement for eligible expenditures that occurred between January 27, 2020, and December 31, 2021.

Grant funding can be used to cover the activities associated with: 

  • Workplace Safety Measures
  • Market Pivots
  • Retrofitting Facilities
  • Transportation
  • Worker Housing
  • Medical Costs

Eligible Applicants

Eligible applicants are MDARD-licensed seafood processing facilities and processing vessels, including at-sea processors or dealers. Qualified beneficiary definitions include: 


The owner, operator, dealer, or agent responsible for any activity that changes the physical condition of a fisheries resource suitable for human consumption, retail sale, industrial use, or long-term storage, including cooking, canning, smoking, salting, drying, shucking, filleting, freezing, or rendering into meal or oil. Any owner, operator, dealer, or agent exclusively gutting, gilling, heading, or icing seafood without performing any of the above activities is NOT considered a processor eligible for payments under this award;  

At-Sea Processor 

A vessel or other platform that floats and can be moved from one location to another, whether in State waters or water of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ), receiving fish and operating as a processor;  


An entity that first receives fish by way of purchase and sells directly to restaurants, markets, other dealers, processors, or consumers without substantially altering the product.

Grant Program Status

The grant application period closed on December 31, 2022 at 3:00pm. Received applications are currently under review.

Grant Program Resources

Application Period

Applications Open

June 27, 2022

Applications Due

December 31, 2022 @ 3pm EST


For more information about this funding opportunity, please contact the Agriculture Development Division at