USDA launched the Meat and Poultry Processing Capacity Technical Assistance Program to assist meat and poultry grant applications and projects funded by grants. Processors and applicants involved with the Meat and Poultry Inspection Readiness Grant Program and the Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program can now access the technical assistance. “This is a true partnership to help meat and poultry processors and grant applicants diversify processing ownership throughout the country,” says Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack. “We’re trying to build capacity and increase economic opportunities for small and mid-sized meat and poultry processors and producers around the country.” USDA encourages grant applications that focus on improving meat and poultry slaughter and processing capacity and efficiency. Applications can also focus on developing new and existing markets, increasing capacity and better meeting consumer and producer demand, and help maintain strong inspection and food safety standards. For more information on the assistance and application deadlines, go to grants.gov.