Maryland Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety (SPRS) Block Grant Program Details

last revised 10/04/22 at 11:32 am

Maryland Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety (SPRS) Block Grant Program


This grant program is for Maryland Wholesale Seafood Dealers whose permit included seafood processor or primary buyer activities on their 2020 or 2021 permits. All other permits are ineligible for this program.


Applications must be completed using this online application process and submitted by July 31, 2022 at 11:59 PM. 

For questions concerning this application, contact Stone Slade at the Maryland Department of Agriculture stone.slade@maryland.gov


Potential Beneficiaries:

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Maryland will distribute $222,673 in reimbursements to eligible seafood processors and wholesale dealers (beneficiaries) through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety Block Grant Program. Potential applicants include seafood processing facilities and processing vessels, including at-sea processors or dealers. Each processing facility or vessel may apply separately for funding. Processors may only apply once for each location or vessel.

Processor means the owner, operator, dealer, or agent responsible for any activity that changes the physical condition of a fisheries resource suitable for human consumption, retail sale, industrial uses, or long-term storage, including cooking, canning, smoking, salting, drying, shucking, filleting, freezing, or rendering into meal or oil. Any owner, operator, dealer, or agent exclusively gutting, gilling, heading, or icing seafood without performing any of the above activities is not considered a processor.

At-sea processor means a vessel or other platform that floats and can be moved from one location to another, whether in State waters or water of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ), receiving fish and operating as a processor.s

Dealer means an entity that first receives fish by way of purchase and sells directly to restaurants, markets, other dealers, processors, or consumers without substantially altering the product.


Eligible Expenses:

Eligible expenses must have been incurred between January 27, 2020, and December 31, 2021, and fall in these activity categories: 

• Workplace Safety Measures: Workplace safety measures, including, but not limited to, personal protective equipment, sanitizer, hand washing stations, air filters, thermometers, cleaning supplies, or similar items.

 • Market Pivots: Market pivots such as transition to virtual/online sales costs (online platform development and fees, online marketing, credit card processing fees), supplies, new signage. 

• Retrofitting Facilities: Retrofitting facilities for worker and consumer safety (retrofitting processing facilities to maximize open-air activities, plexiglass, walk up windows, heat lamps, fans, tents, propane, weights, tables, chairs). 

• Transportation: Additional transportation costs incurred to maintain social distancing. • Worker Housing: Additional worker housing costs incurred to maintain social distancing or to allow for quarantining of new or exposed employees.

• Medical Services: Unreimbursed costs associated with providing or enabling vaccinations, testing, or healthcare treatment of infected employees, including any paid leave.


Beneficiaries of this program cannot use MD SPRS Grant funds to cover any expenses that have received funding assistance previously.

To qualify, you must meet all the minimum requirements below: 

• Must have held a 2020 or 2021 Maryland Wholesale Seafood Dealer Permit that included seafood processor or primary buyer activities. 

• Must have incurred COVID-19-related expenses as detailed above and must have documentation of the expenses for which you plan to seek reimbursement.

 • Must not be de-barred or on the Federal government “do not pay list”. 

• Must be in good standing with state and federal seafood dealer reporting requirements.

Potential beneficiaries must fill out the application below and sign the agreement at the end of the application. Once the application period has ended on July 31, 2022, MDA will review each of the applications and determine the total amount of approved funding requested. If the total amount of funds requested is equal to or less than available funds, we will then transfer funding to each approved seafood processor, dealer or processing vessel. If the total requests for funding exceed the amount of funding available, MDA will prorate the amount each entity will be awarded.


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Instructions

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  1. Check your eligibility. Before proceeding with the application, please be sure you are eligible to participate. Eligibility requirements are outlined below.

    To qualify, you must meet all the minimum requirements below:

    • Must have held a 2020 or 2021 Maryland Wholesale Seafood Dealer Permit that included seafood processor or primary buyer activities.
    • Must have incurred COVID-19-related expenses as detailed above and must have documentation of the expenses for which you plan to seek reimbursement.
    • Must not be de-barred or on the Federal government “do not pay list”.
    • Must be in good standing with state and federal seafood dealer reporting requirements.
  2. Complete the Application.

    If you meet the eligibility requirements, click the Apply Online button above and submit your application for review by the Maryland Department of Agriculture.

What Happens After Submission

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  1. MDA will review your application and either approve or disapprove within 10 working days.
  2. If approved, you will receive an email notification and a check in the mail within approximately 15 days from the approval date.
  3. If disapproved, you will receive an email notification.
  4. If MDA has questions you will be contacted via email or phone.
  5. If you have questions, please submit them via email to stone.slade@maryland.gov or call (410) 841-5775.

Agency/Contact

Form Issuer - Information

Who issues the Form?

Maryland Department of Agriculture mda.maryland.gov

Contact Information

Stone Slade

Email: stone.slade@maryland.gov

Tel: (410) 841-5775 / Fax:

Work hours: