A federal grant will help in the marketing of Skagit County agricultural products and increase consumer awareness of food grown in the Skagit Valley.
The Northwest Agricultural Business Center received the $348,000 grant last month from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Farmers Market Promotion Program, according to a news release.
The funding will provide for three years of staffing, program development and marketing for Genuine Skagit Valley, the agricultural branding strategy that began last year.
As part of the program, farmers and agricultural-related business can sign up to receive labels, signs, advertising and media campaigns, and other promotion for their products.
Genuine Skagit Valley marketing coordinator Blake Vanfield said the program has 38 businesses signed up. She said two businesses — Garden Path Fermentation and Sauk Farm — have incorporated the Genuine Skagit Valley logo into their physical packaging, and others have added stickers with the logos to their products.
The branding strategy was created out of an Innovation Partnership Zone that focused on bringing more value to Skagit County agriculture.
“Now the ‘promotion’ arm will have much-needed baseline funding to enhance the Skagit Valley’s agricultural region’s perception and reputation as a premier, preferred and distinctive origin brand,” David Bauermeister, executive director of the Northwest Agricultural Business Center, said in the news release.