Department of Agriculture

Supporting Arkansas farmers and ranchers while ensuring safe food, fiber, and forest products for the citizens of Arkansas, the nation, and across the globe

Arkansas Taste Test Grant Program

The Arkansas Taste Test Grant Program was established to help schools lead cafeteria taste tests of locally grown specialty crops. The grant program was developed using funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Specialty Crop Block Program to increase the production and consumption of specialty crops in schools. Specialty crops are defined by the USDA are fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops. The Arkansas Department of Agriculture awards grants to public and private K-12 schools, early childhood education facilities, and alternative learning environments to purchase kitchen equipment and utensils, serving materials, and specialty crop seeds and plants to support taste tests.

The application for the Arkansas Taste Test Grant Program can be found at A scoring rubric is provided here for you to refer to as you complete the application. Applicants are welcome to apply for both this grant program and the Arkansas School Garden Grant Program within the same application.

For additional help and support, you may contact Lindsey Cartwright, State Local Procurement Manager at the Arkansas Department of Agriculture,, (501) 442-5710.

Congratulations to the 2021-2022 Arkansas Taste Test Grant Program Recipients!

Twenty-six K-12 schools, early childhood education facilities, and alternative learning environments received grants through this year's grant program. Recipients ranged from schools hosting their first taste tests to schools receiving additional support for their regularly hosted taste tests. The map on the right shows the counties where the recipients are located.

  • Alma School District, Alma
  • Armorel High School, Armorel
  • Baseline Bilingual School, Little Rock
  • Bobby Barrett Elementary, Mount Ida
  • Bright Beginnings Learning Center, Inc., Arkadelphia
  • Cabot Middle School South, Cabot
  • Cedarville Elementary School, Cedarville
  • Centers for Youth and Family, Little Rock
  • Drew Central Elementary, Monticello
  • Early Childhood Education Program at Trinity Cathedral, Little Rock
  • Good Earth Learning Center, Austin
  • James R. Tate Elementary, Van Buren
  • Kiddie Town Learning Center, Little Rock
  • Lincoln Elementary, Lincoln
  • Linda Childers Knapp Elementary, Springdale
  • LISA Academy Springdale, Springdale
  • Little Scholars Schools, Little Rock
  • Manila Elementary, Manila
  • Marvell-Elaine Elementary School, Marvell
  • Nemo Vista FCS High School, Center Ridge
  • Ozark Junior High, Ozark
  • Pinnacle View Middle School, Little Rock
  • Quitman Elementary School, Quitman
  • Salem Elementary School, Benton
  • SAU Tech ABC Preschool, Camden
  • Two Rivers School District, Ola