The Department of Agriculture Tuesday announced approximately $15 million to help socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers own and operate successful farms. Funding is made through USDA’s Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program, also known as the 2501 Program. The program is administered by the USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement. For 30 years, the 2501 Program has helped reach socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers who have experienced barriers to service due to racial or ethnic prejudice. The 2014 farm bill expanded the program to veteran farmers and ranchers. The 2018 farm bill increased mandatory funding for the program through fiscal year 2023. With 2501 program grants, nonprofits, institutions of higher education and Indian Tribes can support socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers through education, training, farming demonstrations, and conferences on farming and agri-business, and by increasing access to USDA’s programs and services.