Governor Lamont Provides Nearly $ 10 Million in COVID Relief Fund for Connecticut’s Dairy and Aquaculture Industries

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Governor Lamont Provides Nearly $ 10 Million in COVID Relief Fund for Connecticut’s Dairy and Aquaculture Industries

(HARTFORD, CT) – Gov. Ned Lamont today announced he is allocating nearly $ 10 million in federal coronavirus relief funding and American Recovery Plan Act funding to support the dairy and aquaculture industries in Canada. Connecticut, which experienced significant market disruption during the pandemic, which negatively impacted sales.

Additional funds will be used to tackle food insecurity with funds to purchase Cultivated CT products for drive-thru distributions and expand the availability of Supplementary Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits in farmers’ markets.

This is in addition to the $ 1.45 million that was previously allocated to programs that support farmers and access to food in Connecticut, including CT Grown for CT Kids; the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program; the Senior’s Farmers Market Nutrition program; and foodshare drive-thru distribution. These dollars will keep Foodshare’s distribution open at least until the end of October.

With these new dollars, the state will have achieved a total investment of $ 10.3 million in these programs.

“Our farmers and their teams are essential workers who played a critical role in getting Connecticut through the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Governor Lamont said. “I am grateful for their dedication to ensuring our residents have access to clean and healthy food. This investment will help keep these incredibly important businesses afloat and feed Connecticut families. “

“Connecticut’s agriculture has been deemed essential during the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing them to continue to plant, cultivate and harvest a wide range of essential foods to feed the residents of our state,” Connecticut Agriculture Commissioner Bryan P. Hurlburt said. However, like so many others, these family businesses have been negatively affected by disruptions and market closures. These funds will strengthen the sectors most seriously affected while investing in food security programs by purchasing Connecticut Grown food products. to support local families. ”

“Connecticut farmers have been frontline heroes during this pandemic,” Members of the Connecticut congressional delegation said in a joint statement. “Their resilience throughout this crisis has been vital in ensuring that Connecticut families have fresh food on their tables. These federal dollars will bring much-needed relief to family farmers in Connecticut who have overcome unprecedented challenges while providing healthy, locally grown food to hungry people. We were proud to get this funding to provide our farmers with the help they need.

“We are grateful for the support we continue to receive from Governor Lamont and our federal delegation and their commitment to prioritizing the fight against food insecurity in Connecticut, as well as their role in securing this funding from. COVID-19 relief used to finance these projects ”, Connecticut Foodshare CEO and Chairman Jason Jakubowski said. “Through continued collaboration between the governor’s office, the Connecticut Department of Agriculture and Connecticut Foodshare, we are not only able to provide food to households across the state, but we are supporting our local producers in the region. Connecticut.”

“COVID-19 market disruptions have closed many opportunities and devastated the aquaculture and dairy markets,” Joan Nichols, executive director of the Connecticut Farm Bureau Association, said. “These strategic investments in agriculture are essential for farmers to continue to operate and provide safe, affordable and healthy food to residents. “

The Governor made the announcement today during a visit to Oak Ridge Dairy, a fifth generation family farm in Ellington. The farm is home to the Modern Milkman, an online subscription-based home delivery service for families in Hartford and Tolland counties.

“This administration’s support for Connecticut agriculture, especially the dairy industry, will ensure the future sustainability of family businesses like mine,” Seth Bahler, CEO of Oakridge Dairy, said. “Market disruptions, fluctuations in commodity prices and weather conditions have been a real challenge and this funding is a huge advantage at a time when it is needed most. “

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