U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger announced Tuesday an award totaling $124,567 to allow Seek Lavender — a family-owned lavender farm in Culpeper — to produce more homegrown farm products for Virginians.
“Virginia is home to more than three quarters of a million small businesses that employ almost half of the Commonwealth’s workers,” Spanberger said. “It is crucial to assist these small businesses in establishing and expanding their markets — because doing so not only serves the businesses individually, but bolsters our economy and labor force. I’m encouraged that this USDA grant funding is headed to the 7th District to support Seek Lavender, their partners and our local economy.”
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded this Value Added Producer Grant (VAPG) for Seek Lavender to allow the farm to produce lavender, eucalyptus, and witch hazel spa and culinary products, lotion, soaps, teas, extracts and oils, and syrup. According to USDA, an estimated 3,000 people will benefit from this VAPG grant to Seek Lavender.
“We will use the reimbursement award to enhance all aspects of our product production, advertising/marking, and packaging/labeling,” said Seek Lavender Owner Mary Seek. “We intend to invest this award in empowering woman owned business by contracting with them for labor support; product specialist, sales, and social media management. This award will allow Seek Lavender to create additional nature inspired products for our community.”
The USDA Value Added Producer Grant program is part of the Local Agriculture Market Program (LAMP), which is an umbrella program created under the 2018 Farm Bill to support the development, coordination, and expansion of direct producer-to-consumer marketing; local and regional food markets and enterprises; and value-added agricultural products.