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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $600,000 in CARES Act Recovery Assistance to Support Growth and Resiliency of Food Manufacturing Sector in Hawaii

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $600,000 CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to the Hawaii Technology Development Corporation (HTDC), Honolulu, Hawaii, to provide technical assistance to small businesses in the state’s food manufacturing sector. This EDA grant, to be matched with $150,000 in local investment, is expected to create or retain 600 jobs.

“The Economic Development Administration is pleased to support the Hawaii Technology Development Corporation’s strategy to advance coronavirus recovery efforts by spurring growth in the vital food manufacturing sector,” said Dennis Alvord, Acting Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This EDA investment will provide the resources and expertise Hawaii’s small food manufacturers need to enhance their competitiveness and strengthen their resiliency.”

“Every business in Hawaii should be thinking about their digital strategy,” said Governor David Ige. “The state’s pivot to digital technologies is going to be essential in rebuilding a sustainable post-covid economy.”

“The coronavirus pandemic has underscored the need to strengthen and improve supply chain networks for food, PPE, and other essential products,” said Senator Mazie Hirono. “With this additional funding, HTDC will be able to continue their important work of diversifying Hawaii’s economy and promoting resiliency and innovation within these networks.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has required our small businesses and agricultural produces, the backbone of our island economy, to re-focus their operations on serving new and virtual markets,” said Congressman Ed Case (HI-01). “I’m proud that Congress’ CARES Act and the Economic Development Administration are directly supporting the Hawai‘i Technology Development Corporation’s innovative vision to develop our value-added food manufacturers in Hawai‘i to enhance competitiveness and adaptability in our 21st-century economy.”

The investment will support HTDC’s efforts to deliver immersive training in digital strategies to small food manufacturing companies. Through a Hawaii Digital Strategy working group, participating companies will receive training, mentorship, and other opportunities to support their market expansion and post pandemic sales recovery. The project will also provide participants with guidance and insights from volunteer executives from HTDC’s network of business partners through the EDA funded Entrepreneurs’ Sandbox facility in Kakaako.

This project is funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136 PDF), which provided EDA with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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