Close this search box.

Specialty Crop Program FAQ

The North Dakota Trade Office (NDTO) is providing Specialty Crop Program funding to eligible business concerns to increase global market visibility and competitiveness of the North Dakota specialty crop sector. The Specialty Crop Program is a reimbursement program authorized by the North Dakota Department of Agriculture’s Specialty Crop Block Grant Program and Agricultural Act. Specialty crops included in this program are peas, beans, lentils, and confectionary sunflowers. The Specialty Crop Program is accessible through our secure website, View a full list of eligible specialty crops here. 

Eligible expenses for reimbursement are airfare, hotel, and meals at federal per diem rates for NDTO led international trade missions, NDTO-organized reverse trade missions, and other activities approved by NDTO that fit within the goals of the grant.

Specialty Crop Program funds are available effective typically on 18 months starting in October. Inquire with NDTO staff to understand specific timelines, which can vary from year to year.

The North Dakota Trade Office (NDTO) administers the Specialty Crop Program.

The Specialty Crop Program is open to North Dakota-based companies that export specialty crops, are in good standing with NDTO, and have a significant presence in North Dakota. Companies must be in business for at least one year, be profitable, have demonstrated an understanding of the costs associated with exporting, and have a strategic export plan.

Specialty Crop Program application approval can take up to one (1) week or longer. Approvals are based on the quality of the application, receipt of all required documents, and the funding dollars available. NDTO reserves the right to accept or reject any application, amend the applicant’s requested funding, or limit applications to any applicant. NDTO’s decisions shall be considered final.

Spending and activities that occur before your approval date will not be eligible for reimbursement.

When your application is approved, you will be notified by email, fax, or phone, indicating the approval terms.

There is no application or administrative fee required to participate.

A condition of participation in the Specialty Crop Program will be the applicant’s written commitment (see the Success Agreement) to report the number of prospective buyers met during each trade mission and all related export sales data to NDTO on a quarterly basis. The information reported is confidential but may be reported to interested parties in cumulative, summary form.

Absolutely! NDTO loves success stories and would be happy to share your story with the media and other interested parties.

The number of prospective buyers met during each trade mission or activity, increased export sales (including dollar value and quantity, if possible), and company status of new to export or to the market.

Specific documentation is required for all reimbursement claims to protect against fraud and other improper activities. Foreign language documentation must be translated into English or it will not be processed. All reimbursement requests require the following information: 1. invoice from vendor; 2. proof of payment; and 3. proof of activity. See guidelines for additional details.

Reimbursement requests should be submitted timely, preferably within 30 days after the activity is completed.

Please submit only photocopies of receipts; do not submit originals.

The survey results and expected sales outcomes are a requirement of your participation in the Specialty Crop Program. Participants must provide the number of export-related agreements, the number of prospective buyers met, the dollar value of projected sales, the dollar value of actual sales, and any information on the program’s success or success stories relevant to the program.

Reimbursement will only be based on per diem rates as published by the federal government. Hotel rates lower than the federal per diem will be based on actual expenses.

Foreign per diem rates for allowable lodging expenses are managed by The US State Department and located at:

Domestic per diem rates for allowable lodging expenses are located at: