Today, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announced the launch of a shrimp refrigeration cost-share program for shrimp industry members. This announcement marks the latest endeavor to support the seafood industry with equipment upgrades. The program gives eligible shrimp vessel owners, docks, and processing facilities the opportunity to qualify for 50 percent of any authorized refrigeration equipment costs, up to $30,000. Participants in this program may purchase and install advanced refrigeration equipment onboard their vessels or at their facility in order to produce high-quality seafood products.
Wholesale/Retail dealers who want to participate must first be enrolled in the Louisiana Wild Seafood Certification Program (LWSCP), a voluntary program for Louisiana wild seafood that was passed by the Louisiana Legislature in 2010. LWSCP was developed with the intention of establishing a more professional seafood industry with better handling practices and higher quality products.
Some examples of equipment that are eligible for this program are: Seawater chilling systems, ice makers—limited to land based facilities only, freezers, generators—tied to a refrigeration system, cooler/freezer boxes and associated insulations, brine freezers, plate freezers, other freezer types, combined commercial refrigeration units, condensers and coils of split refrigeration systems, refrigeration supplies, electrical supplies—tied to a refrigeration system, and other equipment and supplies that can be verifiably associated with shrimp refrigeration. All equipment will be evaluated as a complete system to ensure it will meet refrigeration needs of the vessel or facility. New equipment and currently installed equipment that was purchased beginning January 1, 2010 will be eligible for reimbursement provided it meets program requirements. New equipment to be installed must be approved prior to purchase. Reimbursement for labor costs associated with professional installation of equipment is limited to 15% of the total cost of equipment, not to exceed $4,500. Final approval of funds disbursement may be subject to an inspection.
Applicants must complete a separate application for each LDWF license and each business physical location. Successful applicants will receive an equipment approval letter notifying them when to purchase the eligible equipment and will be given a deadline to submit receipts for the purchased equipment.
To apply for this program, download a copy of the application packet at the following link http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/SRGP/application. Applicants who are unable to download the application and would like a copy mailed to them should contact LDWF at 225-765-3980 or toll-free 855-262-1764. Applicants who need language assistance to complete the application should contact South Central Planning and Development Commission at 985-655-1051 or toll-free 1-800-630-3791. Funding is allocated. annually, and applications will be selected based on available funds. To ensure your application receives consideration for funding during this fiscal year, your application must be received no later than March 31st, 2014. Applications will continue to be accepted after this date but may be subject to placement on a waiting list until the next funding allocation. Eligible applicants with completed applications will be awarded funding in order, by postmark/received date of last document submitted.
Logo courtesy Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries