Cover photo for Specialty Crop Research Initiative

Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI)

National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Closed December 8, 2023

The purpose of the SCRI program is to address the critical needs of the specialty crop industry by awarding grants to support research and extension that address key challenges of national, regional, and multi-state importance in sustaining all components of food and agriculture, including conventional and organic food production systems. Projects must address at least one of five focus areas:

  • Research in plant breeding, genetics, genomics, and other methods to improve crop characteristics

  • Efforts to identify and address threats from pests and diseases, including threats to specialty crop pollinators

  • Efforts to improve production efficiency, handling and processing, productivity, and profitability over the long term (including specialty crop policy and marketing)

  • New innovations and technology, including improved mechanization and technologies that delay or inhibit ripening

  • Methods to prevent, detect, monitor, control, and respond to potential food safety hazards in the production efficiency, handling and processing of specialty crops



Pre-applications may only be submitted by

  • Federal agencies,

  • national laboratories,

  • colleges and universities,

  • research institutions and organizations,

  • private organizations or corporations,

  • State Agricultural Experiment Stations,

  • individuals,

  • or groups consisting of two or more of these entities.

For those new to Federal financial assistance, a grants overview page is available on the NIFA website. This page includes information about free Grants 101 Training and other resources that are highly recommended for those seeking an understanding of Federal awards.


There is no matching requirement for the FY2023 SCRI program.

Application Instructions

Read the RFA carefully, and apply online at this link.



December 8, 2023

Financial Instrument


Total Program Funding


Updated March 26, 2024

Image Credit: Marita Mones

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