(NAFB) – Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack announced additional aid intended for agricultural producers and businesses as part of the USDA Pandemic Assistance for Producers Initiative.

Earlier this year, the secretary announced plans to use available pandemic assistance funds to address a number of gaps and disparities in previous rounds of aid. As part of the Pandemic Assistance initiative announced in March, USDA pledged to continue Coronavirus Food Assistance Program payments and to provide aid to producers and businesses left behind. Implementation of the assistance announced this week will continue within 60 days to include support to timber harvesters, biofuels, dairy farmers and processors, livestock farmers and contract growers of poultry, assistance for organic cost share, and grants for PPE.

“USDA is honoring its commitment to get financial assistance to producers and critical agricultural businesses, especially those left out or underserved by previous COVID aid,” says Vilsack. “These investments through USDA pandemic Assistance will help our food, agriculture, and forestry sectors get back on track and plan for the future.”

Since January, USDA has provided more than $11 billion worth of assistance to producers, as well as food and agriculture businesses.