Cabarrus gets $675,000 grant to help build slaughterhouse
By Steve Huffman
The Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund on Tuesday announced $7.6 million in grants to help communities protect farmland or promote agricultural enterprises.
The grants were announced by Steve Troxler, agriculture commissioner.
One of the largest of those grants was for $675,000 and goes to Cabarrus County to help develop a slaughter facility, food council and marketing plan for Cabarrus, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly and Union counties.
Dewitt Hardee, manager of the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, said the grant will cover just a fraction of the millions it will cost to build the slaughter facility.
He said it’s a facility that’s badly needed, as a number of beef cattle farmers have for decades had to spend more than half a day transporting their cattle to market.
“It’s a big project; there’s been a longtime need for this type facility in that area,” Hardee said.
He said that as part of the project, a marketing plan has also been devised by which the cattle that are slaughtered will be sold. Hardee said the beef will go to everything from schools to prisons, thereby reducing the price of those items in the local market.
“It’s a win-win situation,” Hardee said. “It’ll be less cost for the community.”
The $7.6 million in grants will support 41 projects across the state. Grants awarded in Rowan County include:
– The LandTrust for Central North Carolina was awarded $135,271 to assist in the purchase of a 25-year term agreement on 271 acres of the Rollans Farm, which produces row crops and hay.
– The LandTrust for Central North Carolina also received a grant of $25,000 to assist with the transaction costs associated with the donation of an easement on 195 acres of the Knox Farm, which produces livestock and grain.
– Rowan County Soil and water Conservation District received $367,100 to assist in the purchase of a 50-year term agreement on 149 acres of the Starnes Farm, which produces poultry.