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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 13, 2004

Schumer: Over $114,000 Coming To Appleton Creek Winery

Schumer announces that USDA Rural Development has approved $114,000 in federal funds for the Appleton Creek Winery

Schumer: Federal grant will help Appleton Creek Winery expand and bring its wine into a larger market; Senator encourages New York farmers to take advantage of grant program

US Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced $114,425 in federal funds for Appleton Creek Winery to help it expand and bring its signature wine into a larger market. The funds are being awarded through USDA's Rural Development program as a Value-Added Agricultural Product Market Development Grant (VAPG).

"For years, the people of Appleton have enjoyed the great wine from the Appleton Creek Winery and now this program will help bring that fine wine into homes throughout New York State and beyond," Schumer said. "By providing funding to develop a comprehensive merchandise and marketing plan, this grant will help get the Appleton wine to more markets. That's good news for the Appleton Creek Winery and good news for the local economy."

Back in April, Schumer urged farmers throughout New York State to apply for the Value-Added Producer Grants. The grants offer funding to support the development of value-added projects such as producing vegetables organically and processing wheat into flour, important for the generation of jobs and additional income for producers. The competitive program provides up to $500,000 per eligible applicant for proposals that seek to fund one of the following two activities: development of feasibility studies or business plans (including marketing plans or other planning activities) needed to establish a viable value-added marketing opportunity for an agricultural product; or acquiring working capital to operate a value-added business venture or an alliance that will allow the producers to better compete in domestic and international markets.

Schumer encouraged all interested New York farmers to apply for the program. "This really is a great opportunity for New York State farmers and it's time to take advantage," Schumer said." The funding is out there and I encourage all New York farmers to apply and benefit from this program."

New York’s farmers, cooperatives, and agricultural producer groups were awarded $534,335 under the program this year. The VAPG Program was authorized by the Agriculture Risk Protection Act of 2000 and was amended by the 2002 Farm Bill.

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