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Content provided by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
10.212 Small Business Innovation Research




Small Business Innovation Development Act of 1982, Public Law 97-219, as amended, Public Law 99-443; Public Law 102-564.
OBJECTIVES: Click here for help!
To stimulate technological innovation in the private sector, strengthen the role of small businesses in meeting Federal research and development needs, increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from USDA-supported research and development efforts, and foster and encourage participation, by women-owned and socially disadvantaged small business firms in technological innovation.


Project Grants.
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The selected areas for research are forests and related resources; plant production and protection; animal production and protection; air, water, and soils; food science and nutrition; rural and community development; aquaculture; industrial applications; and marketing and trade. The Small Business Innovation Research Program is carried out in three separate phases: Phase I projects are supported to determine the scientific or technical feasibility of ideas submitted by proposes on the selected research areas; Phase II awards are made to firms with approaches that appear sufficiently promising as a result of Phase I studies. Only those small businesses previously receiving Phase I awards in either of the two preceding fiscal years are eligible to submit Phase II proposals. Phase II projects are limited to $300,000 for a period normally not to exceed 24 months; Phase III is to be conducted by the small business concern (including joint ventures and limited partnerships), and will be non-SBIR funded through the exercising of a follow-on funding commitment. The purpose of Phase III is to stimulate technological innovation and the national return on investment from research through the pursuit of commercialization objectives resulting from the USDA-supported work carried out in Phases I and II.


Applicant Eligibility:   Small businesses which: (a) Are organized for profit, independently owned or operated, are not dominant in the proposed research field, have their principal places of business located in the United States, have a number of employees not exceeding 500 in all affiliated firms owned or controlled by a single parent concern, and meet the other regulatory requirements outlined in 13 CFR Part 121, as amended; (b) are at least 51 percent owned, or in the case of a publicly owned business, at least 51 percent of its voting stock is owned, by U.S. citizens or lawfully admitted permanent resident aliens; (c) are the primary source of employment for the principal investigator of the proposed effort at the time of award and during the actual conduct of proposed research; (d) are the primary performer of the proposed research effort. Because this program is intended to increase the use of small business firms in Federal research or research and development, the term "primary performer" means that a minimum of two-thirds of the research or analytical work, as determined by budget expenditures, must be performed by the proposing organization under Phase I grants. For Phase II awards, a minimum of one-half of the research or analytical effort must be conducted by the proposing firm.

Beneficiary Eligibility:   Small businesses.

Credentials/Documentation:   Each prospective grantee organization must furnish the organizational information and assurances specified in the SBIR program solicitation. The principles to be used in determining allowable costs of activities under this program are contained in the Federal Acquisition Regulations, 48 CFR Part 31. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-87.

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Pre-application Coordination:   Publication by the Small Business Administration listing all agencies participating in the program, their Small Business Innovation Research coordinators, proposed dates for their solicitations, and proposed topic areas. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-102 and E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure:   Formal proposal to SBIR Program, CSREES, USDA, as outlined in the SBIR program solicitation. Application procedures are contained in the SBIR program solicitation. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110.

Award Procedure:   The SBIR Program staff reviews and evaluates all proposals with the assistance and advice of a peer panel of qualified scientists and other appropriate persons who are specialists in the field covered by the proposal.

Deadlines:   Deadlines are announced in the Federal Register and SBIR Program Solicitation for each fiscal year. The deadline for submission of fiscal year 2002 Phase I proposals was August 31, 2001, and for Phase II proposals was February 7, 2002.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time:   Six months from application receipt to notification of approval/disapproval.

Appeals:   Phase I applications may be revised and resubmitted during a later funding cycle, provided the subject matter of the proposal is not changed, and the topic area under which the proposal was originally submitted is still listed in the solicitation. Phase I grantees may apply for a Phase II grant only once for each Phase I project funded.

Renewals:   None.


Formula and Matching Requirements:   There are no matching requirements.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance:   Phase I grants are normally limited to 6 months. Phase II grants are normally limited to 2 years.


Reports:   Final performance and final financial status reports for Phase I grants must be submitted 30 and 90 days, respectively, after the expiration date of the grant. Final performance and final financial status reports for Phase II grants must be submitted 90 days after the expiration date of the grant.

Audits:   Periodic audits should be made as part of the recipient's systems of financial management and internal control to meet the terms and conditions of grants and other agreements. This program is also subject to audit by the cognizant Federal audit agency and the USDA Office of Inspector General. Federal audits will be made in accordance with the policies of the Federal Acquisition Regulations, 48 CFR Part 42, to ensure that funds have been applied efficiently, economically, and effectively.

Records:   Grantees are expected to maintain separate records for each grant to ensure that funds are used for the purpose for which the grant was made. Records are subject to inspection during the life of the grant and for at least 3 years after the date of submission of the final financial status report.


Account Identification:   12-1500-0-1-352.

Obligations:   (Grants) FY 01 $13,807,445; FY 02 est $12,769,709; and FY 03 est $12,769,709.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance:  
If minimum or maximum amounts of funding per competitive project grant or cooperative agreement are established, these will be announced in the annual program announcement or Request for Application (RFA).

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This program was designed to strengthen the role of small, innovative firms in Federally-funded research and development. The nine categories of research supported under this program are: Forests and Related Resources; Plant Production and Protection; Animal Production and Protection; Air, Water, and Soils; Food Science and Nutrition; Rural and Community Development; Aquaculture; Industrial Applications; and Marketing and Trade.


7 CFR Part 3403, Small Business Innovation Research Grants Program, Administrative Provisions, 62 FR26168, May 12, 1997; 7 CFR Part 3015, USDA Uniform Federal Assistance Regulations; 7 CFR Part 3017, Government wide Debarment and Suspension (Non-procurement) and Government wide Requirements for Drug- Free Workplace (Grants); 7 CFR Part 3018, New Restrictions on Lobbying.


Regional or Local Office:  
None. Section # 153 - Additional Websites:

Headquarters Office:  
USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Bioenergy, Climate and Environment Division of Environmental Systems, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2210, Washington, District of Columbia, 20250-2210, Telephone: (202) 720-5229, Fax: (202) 720-3945.


USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition, Division of Food Safety, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2225, Washington, District of Columbia 20250-2225 Phone: (202) 401-1954, Fax (202) 401-4888. , Washington , District of Columbia 20250-2210 Email: Phone: (202) 720-5229

Web Site Address:


Bolted Wood Framing System; Development of Floating Permeable Covers to Control Emissions from Livestock Waste Lagoons; Production of Organic Acids by Simultaneous Fermentation and Adsorption; Software for Evaluating the Impact of Forest Management Plans on Wildlife; Bioprocessing Wheat Midds and Screenings to Improve Protein.


(a) The scientific and technical quality of the proposed research plan and its relevance to the stated objectives, with special emphasis on innovativeness and originality; (b) importance of the problem or opportunity and anticipated commercial potential of the proposed research, if successful; (c) adequacy of the objectives to show incremental progress toward proving the feasibility of approach; (d) qualifications of the principal investigator, other key staff and consultants, and the probable adequacy of available or obtainable instrumentation and facilities to carry out the proposed work; (e) the technical, economic, and/or social importance of the problem or opportunity and anticipated commercial potential if research is successful; and (f) reasonableness of the budget requested for the work proposed.

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