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07/13/2024 03:14 PM
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=H&SPick=20230&cosponId=42562
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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: April 18, 2024 03:47 PM
From: Representative Paul Takac
To: All House members
Subject: Agriculture Innovation
 
In the near future, I intend to introduce legislation that would create an Agriculture Innovation Fund, providing farmers and agribusinesses with grant opportunities to adopt new technologies and increase efficiencies.
Like many industries, technology is revolutionizing agriculture, allowing farmers to be more efficient, improve food production, improve conservation practices, reduce energy consumption and have a positive role in addressing climate challenges.
Agriculture has always been at the forefront of innovation, but the pace of research and discovery is providing even greater pressure and opportunities for farmers to improve their businesses and overall stewardship. The Agriculture Innovation Fund would help provide farmers and agribusinesses with the resources to adopt new practices.
A key component of Governor Shapiro’s 2024-2025 proposed budget, this bill would provide the Department of Agriculture, working in connection with the State Conservation Commission, the ability to award grants in three categories: planning grants, on-farm projects and regional impact projects. Each of these grants would be open to farmers, agribusinesses and the businesses that provide valuable services to farmers, such as crop protection, farm equipment service companies, animal health and plant professionals and conservation assistance or data collection.
Drones that can be used to assist fruit and vegetable growers better assess crop health and production, or assist foresters assess timber quality and harvest decisions, farmers installing GPS units in/on equipment to better manage input costs and soil health decisions, veterinarians assessing animal and poultry health are just some examples of the types of projects that could be funded through this program.
By creating this fund, the state can better equip our farmers and agribusinesses with the resources they need to meet food production needs of society, innovate, compete, and grow into the future. Thank you for joining me in support of this important piece of legislation.
 
 



Introduced as HB2310