The U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) opened applications for the Supplemental and Alternative Crops Competitive Grants program in April. It will offer about $1 million in grants for research on "breeding, testing, and development of superior performing canola and industrial hemp varieties and production practices that result in improved cost efficiencies, reduced grower risks, and wider use in production systems." The deadline to submit proposals is May 31.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards that identify and regulate high-risk facilities possessing hazardous chemicals. The standards prevent terrorist use of these chemicals through the regulation, inspection and enforcement of chemical infrastructure security requirements. They apply to pesticide manufacturers, agricultural retailers and food processing plants, requiring the assessment of security vulnerabilities and implementation of security plans. The DHS offers a Help Desk to chemical facility owners and operators (866-323-2957; email@example.com) and a Tip Line for anonymous chemical facility security reporting (877-394-4347; 1-877-FYI-4DHS).
Biodiesel industry stakeholders are still hard at work to renew the biodiesel tax credit, which has been in limbo since the end of 2017. A group of more than 70 stakeholders submitted a letter to Congress urging the extension of the $1 per gallon tax credit and outlining the harm that failing to extend it has caused, Progressive Farmer reports. “The future of the credit has been unclear for more than 14 months,” the letter states. “That uncertainty is curtailing investments in new plants and capital projects to upgrade existing plants. It is beginning to force some producers, blenders and distributors to cut back purchases of raw materials and deliveries of renewable fuel to consumers, which will have impacts across the economy.”
The U.S. Canola Association (USCA) is also pushing for Congress to reinstate the biodiesel tax credit. Tom Hance of Gordley Associates tells more in the current USCA blog.