(May 22) Massachusetts’ new Agricultural Innovation Center is to award nearly $2.7 million in 10 grants to help the state’s growers be more competitive.

Governor Deval Patrick, senate president Therese Murray and energy and environmental affairs secretary Ian Bowles announced the awards May 18 during a visit to cranberry grower Bog Hollow Farm Inc., Kingston, Mass., according to a news release.

Among the awards:

  • $1.5 million to the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers’ Association, East Wareham, Mass., for bog renovation projects and business development;

  • $117,000 to the Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture, South Deerfield, Mass., for business development projects including bagged salads and other products; and

  • $71,500 for a project on sustainable pollination strategies to be conducted by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources and the University of Massachusetts.

These are the first to be awarded through the new center, which was created by the legislature last year to develop partnerships among the state’s Department of Agricultural Resources and trade groups, according to the release said.