Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and PennAg Industries today announced that $280,000 is available to Pennsylvania's poultry, swine, lamb, goat, and sheep processors to reimburse costs associated with the purchase of personal protective equipment for their workforce through the Center for Poultry and Livestock Excellence, a result of Governor Tom Wolf's 2019 Pennsylvania Farm Bill.
"Nearly one year ago, Governor Wolf signed our first-ever PA Farm Bill, a comprehensive package of legislation that he had the foresight to propose that includes the opportunity to provide resources to safeguard the health of our industry and our most valuable asset: our workforce," said Agriculture Secretary Redding.
The PPE Reimbursement Program is available to any processor or support service of poultry, swine, lamb, goats, and sheep impacted in Pennsylvania that's had a need to purchase PPE to protect their workforce from COVID-19 between February 19, 2020 and May 18, 2020 and can produce a paid receipt for the product. Applicants can receive up to $16,000 in the following three categories:
- Up to $1,000 for bilingual training materials and signage;
- Up to $5,000 for prevention and surveillance tools (such as thermometers);
- Up to $10,000 for PPE and sanitation/cleaning materials (including masks, coveralls, gloves, face shields, hand sanitizer, cleaning products).
"Pennsylvania agriculture has rolled up their sleeves and worked overtime to ensure food reaches your table. Those in the industry need Personal Protective Equipment, just like the rest of Pennsylvania's frontline workers," said PennAg Executive Vice President Chris Herr. "This PPE reimbursement program is our 'thank you'."
In 2019, Governor Tom Wolf signed the first-ever Pennsylvania Farm Bill and funded the Center for Poultry and Livestock Excellence at $1 million. The center is a partnership between the department and PennAg Industries and guided by a board of directors representative of the swine, poultry, and small ruminant sectors as well as a diverse group of agriculture, animal health, and academic stakeholders.
The 2019 PA Farm Bill was the first comprehensive legislative package of its kind to invest in Pennsylvania agriculture, Governor Wolf has proposed another $23 million for the PA Farm Bill in the 2020-21 budget.
Producers interested in applying for reimbursement should complete the application and submit it, along with copies of receipts, to the Center for Poultry and Livestock Excellence at firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions about the program or application should be directed to Jennifer Reed-Harry at email@example.com. Funding is available on a first-come, first-serve basis until June 12, 2020, or until funds are exhausted.
For a complete list of guidance documents and information as it relates to agriculture during COVID-19 mitigation in Pennsylvania visit agriculture.pa.gov/COVID. For the most accurate, timely information related to Health in Pennsylvania, visit on.pa.gov/coronavirus.
MEDIA CONTACT: Shannon Powers – 717.783.2628