Topeka, Kan, May 08, 2013 -- USDA Rural Development State Director Patty Clark announced that Wine Barn LLC received a Value-Added Producer Grant to assist in marketing and increasing production of its Kansas produced wine. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) remains focused on carrying out its mission, despite a time of significant budget uncertainty. Today’s announcement is one part of the Department’s efforts to strengthen the rural economy.
Wine Barn, LLC received a $25,000 USDA Value-Added Producer Grant (VAPG). The VAPG program helps agricultural producers and small businesses increase their income by expanding marketing opportunities, creating new products or developing new uses for existing products. USDA funding will assist Wine Barn to ramp up production of its wine by more than 40 percent in the next two years, as well as overhauling the company’s website.
“USDA’s Value-Added Producer Grants help provide financial capital to small businesses and producers that are looking to expand or create a new value-added product,” said Clark. “We are excited to partner with the Wine Barn as they continue to expand their production line to create more quality products made from Kansas grown grapes.”
Wine Barn is a family-owned business that has been operating since 2009. While the winery opened in 2009, the vineyard was planted in 2000. It takes five to seven years for grape vines to mature. Today, the winery produces 20 different wines from the nine varietal grapes that are grown on its property and some Kansas-grown grapes that are purchased.
“We applied for the Value-Added Producer Grant because we didn’t have the capital to expand the way we wanted to,” said Wine Barn owner, Brian Mikijanis. “Last year we sold more than 90 percent of the wine we had in stock, and this grant will allow us to increase the production of our wines, and lower capital expenditures by purchasing items in bulk.”
Wine Barn’s winery and vineyard are located on 16 acres in Wyandotte County, Kan., with a pond, wine-tasting building, and offering live jazz music and private events throughout the year. To learn more about Wine Barn, visit: www.winebarnwinery.com
Value-Added Producer Grants are an important element of USDA’s Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative, which coordinates USDA’s work to support local and regional food systems. Previous VAPG awards supporting local and regional projects are mapped on the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food compass, http://www.usda.gov/maps/maps/kyfcompassmap.htm
USDA has made a concerted effort to deliver results for the American people, even as USDA implements sequestration – the across-the-board budget reductions mandated under terms of the Budget Control Act. USDA has already undertaken historic efforts since 2009 to save more than $700 million in taxpayer funds through targeted, common-sense budget reductions. These reductions have put USDA in a better position to carry out its mission, while implementing sequester budget reductions in a fair manner that causes as little disruption as possible.
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