Cover photo for Food Safety Audit Cost-Share Program

Food Safety Audit Cost-Share Program

Delaware Department of Agriculture

Closed July 31, 2021

This cost-share program is designed to assist Delaware fruit and vegetable growers with the cost associated with obtaining an third party food safety audit and the testing of their agricultural water. Delaware growers can now receive financial support in obtaining a third party audit to verify they are following effective food safety practices. Audits verify that fruits and vegetables are produced, packed, handled, and stored in the safest manner possible to minimize risks of microbial food safety hazards. Part of verifying good agricultural and good handling practices is by ensuring the water used in crop production and postharvest activities is safe. 



To be eligible for assistance, Delaware fruit and vegetable growers must meet the following requirements:

  • Growers must have successfully completed a third-party USDA AMS or commercial audit.

  • Growers must submit receipts for the water tests performed

  • All paperwork must be submitted to the Delaware Department of Agriculture between October 1, 2018 and July 31, 2021, to be eligible for reimbursement. In the event of limited funds, preference will be given to audits on a first come, first serve basis until funds are depleted.


The Delaware Department of Agriculture, Food Products Inspection Section, will pay 80 percent of the cost of a successful USDA AMS or commercial third party food safety audit with a maximum reimbursement of $1,000 per year, per farm. Upon successful competition, the department will also pay 80 percent of the cost associated with annual water testing, with a maximum reimbursement of $500 per year, per farm. For 2019, USDA has agreed to defray 100% of the costs associated with Harmonized GAP and Harmonized GAP+ Audits; in Delaware. If USDA has covered 100% of the applicants successful audit, the applicant is still eligible for water testing reimbursement through this cost-share and should proceed to fill out this application.

Application Instructions

Applicants must fully complete the necessary application and be able to show verification of successful audit completion, billing and proof of payment for the audit. In addition, the State of Delaware requires all applicants to register in the new State of Delaware eSupplier Portal before payments can be made. If you have previously been reimbursed through the state, your information is still on file but be sure to update any information in the new portal, as necessary. This portal can be located at


Release Date

October 1, 2018


July 31, 2021

Financial Instrument

Cost Share, Grant

Updated March 22, 2024

Image Credit: University of Delaware Carvel REC

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