Second application window closed December 29, 2022.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the Biden-Harris Administration would make $500 million in grants available to increase American-made fertilizer production to spur competition and combat price hikes on U.S. farmers.
What does this program do?
The Fertilizer Product Expansion Program (FPEP) provides grants to help eligible applicants increase or otherwise expand the manufacturing and processing of fertilizer and nutrient alternatives and their availability in the United States.
Who may apply for this program?
Entities are eligible regardless of legal structure and may include, but are not limited to, Tribes, Tribal Entities, for‐profit entities, corporations, non‐profit entities, producer‐owned cooperatives and corporations, certified benefit corporations, and State or local government entities. Private entities must be independently owned and operated.
Eligible applicants must:
- Operate within the U.S. or its territories;
- Manufacture or process or plan to manufacture or process in accordance with all Federal, State, Tribal and local regulations governing fertilizer and nutrient alternatives, processing, storage, distribution, and waste management;
- Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) and must maintain annual SAM registration while an application is active and through the term of an award. Instructions on how to register your entity in the SAM.
Additionally, eligible applicants, including affiliates of the eligible applicant, must not hold a market share (in either manufacturing, processing, or distribution) greater than or equal to the entity that holds the fourth largest share of that market for any of the following nutrients or components: Nitrogen, or Phosphate, or Potash, or any combination of the three.
All applicants must certify whether they hold a market share greater than or equal to the top four manufacturers, or processors, or distributors of Nitrogen, or Phosphate, or Potash, or any combination of the three. If manufacturing or processing or planning to manufacture or process other eligible nutrients which are not listed above, no certification is required.
How may funds be used?
Grant funds must be used for the purpose of increasing or otherwise expanding the manufacturing and processing of fertilizer and nutrient alternatives and their availability in the United States.
Grant funds may be used to expand processing capacity by supporting activities such as:
- Construction of a new facility or purchase of an existing facility for purposes of expanding capacity or increasing output, including the purchase of land;
- Pre-development costs including, but not limited to, engineering and other professional fees;
- Working capital to support expanded capacity or increased outputs;
- Modernizing or expanding an existing facility, including expansion and modifications to existing buildings and construction of new buildings at existing facilities;
- Purchasing new, or modernizing existing processing and manufacturing equipment;
- Customizing, and installing equipment, devices, and technology that improves processing functions, worker conditions, or safety;
- Modernizing, customizing, and installing climate‐smart equipment that reduces greenhouse gas emissions, increases fertilizer use efficiency, improves air and water quality, or meets one or more of USDA’s climate action goals;
- Ensuring compliance with packaging and labeling requirements under applicable law (including sealing, packaging, boxing, labeling, conveying, and product moving equipment);
- Ensuring compliance with occupational and other safety requirements under applicable law;
- Engaging in workforce recruitment, training, apprenticeships, and retention to ensure expansion projects will be adequately staffed and crewed and offer opportunities to workers.
What is the maximum grant amount?
The maximum award amount is $100 million. The minimum award amount is $1 million.
What are the terms of the grant?
The grant term is five years.
What are some other requirements?
FPEP will support the production of agricultural commodities through the manufacturing and processing of fertilizer, nutrient alternatives that are:
- Independent and outside the dominant fertilizer suppliers. The goal is to increase competition. Consequently, entities that hold a market share (in either manufacturing, processing, or distribution) that is greater than or equal to the entity that holds the fourth largest share of the market for Nitrogen, or Phosphate, or Potash, or any combination of the three, will not be considered for funding;
- Made in America - produced in the United States by companies, operating in the U.S. and territories, creating good-paying jobs at home and reducing the reliance on potentially unstable or inconsistent foreign supplies;
- Innovative – to improve upon fertilizer production methods and efficient-use technologies to jump start the next generation of fertilizer and nutrient alternatives;
- Sustainable - reduces the greenhouse gas impact of transportation, production, and use through renewable energy sources, feedstocks, formulations, and incentivizing greater precision in fertilizer use; and
- Farmer-focused - like other Commodity Credit Corporation investments, a driving factor will be providing support and opportunities for U.S. agricultural commodity producers.
What governs this program?
FPEP is authorized by the CCC Charter Act, to assist agricultural producers through loans, purchases, payments, and other operations, and makes available materials and facilities required in the production and marketing of agricultural commodities. FPEP grants are administered by USDA, Rural Development, Rural Business‐Cooperative Service (RBCS).
– Applicants are encouraged to review the Applicant Self-Screening Tool to assess preliminary eligibility for the program.
All FPEP applications must be filed through https://www.grants.gov unless the applicant cannot successfully complete SAM registration by December 29, 2022.
In this special circumstance, follow the ALTERNATIVE FPEP 12-29-2022 APPLICATION SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS.
Please review the Application Checklist to ensure a complete FPEP application is filed. Please review the following documents referenced in the application checklist:
- Project Narrative
- Environmental Checklist
- Feasibility Study Guide (for projects requesting $5 M or more)
- Signed Certifications Fillable Form
- Matching Funds Guidance
- RBCS How-To Apply Video Series for Applicants
All applicant entities must have a current and active registration in the System for Award Management (SAM) in order to file an FPEP application. Please reference Section 3.7 of the FPEP RFA for registration instructions.
The first FPEP application window closed November 14, 2022.
FPEP applications submitted into the second window must be received by 11:59 pm Eastern Time on December 29, 2022. (90 days from 9/30/2022).
Applications received after the December 29, 2022 deadline or filed in any other manner will not be considered for funding.
Persons with disabilities that require alternative means for communication should contact the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Target Center at (202) 720–2600 (voice).