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Home  > Funding Opportunites

Funding Opportunities

July 2015

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Permalink Kentucky On-Farm Energy Efficiency Incentives Program

The 2015 KADF On-Farm Energy Efficiency Incentives Program provides incentives for Kentucky farm families to increase the energy efficiency of existing equipment or facilities. Successful applicants may receive up to 50% reimbursement of the actual cost of a qualified energy saving item, up to $10,000.
Applications are due by July 31, 2015.

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Permalink Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership

USDA has announced the availability of $17.5 million in financial and technical assistance through the Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership (WREP), a special enrollment option under the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program's Wetland Reserve Easement component. Under WREP, states, local units of governments, non-governmental organizations, and American Indian tribes collaborate with USDA through cooperative and partnership agreements. NRCS will sign multi-year agreements with partners to leverage resources, including funding, to achieve maximum wetland restoration, protection and enhancement and to create optimum wildlife habitat on enrolled acres. WREP partners are required to contribute a funding match for financial or technical assistance. These partners work with willing tribal and private landowners who voluntarily enroll eligible land into easements to protect, restore, and enhance wetlands on their properties.
Proposals must be submitted to NRCS state offices by July 31, 2015.

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Permalink Community Food System Whole Measures Mini Grants Program

University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension educators working with an existing or new interdisciplinary community food systems project are eligible and encouraged to apply for the 2015 Community Food System Whole Measures Mini Grants Program. Funded projects will receive support with program development, implementation and evaluation using the Whole Measures framework and serve as case studies for interdisciplinary approaches to food systems work. Although there is no maximum amount per request, the Community Food Systems Team is looking to fund projects that are approximately $1,000 – $3,000 in scope.
Proposals are due by July 31, 2015.

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Permalink Pennsylvania RCCP Projects through EQIP

Natural Resources Conservation Service has announced that Pennsylvania agricultural producers and non-industrial private forest landowners in targeted areas can now apply for conservation assistance through new approved Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) projects. NRCS funding to producers and landowners is made available through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). Awarded funds will be dedicated to installing conservation practices and easements in selected areas to accomplish a wide diversity of agricultural and natural resource goals such as improving water and soil quality, and restoring fish and wildlife habitat. For FY2015, funding for EQIP contracts is expected to be available through the Stroud Water Research Center project, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) Delaware River Watershed project, and the American Bird Conservancy Cerulean Warbler habitat project.
PA NRCS will accept applications through July 31, 2015.

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Permalink Conservation Innovation Grants in Kansas

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Kansas is accepting proposals for grants to fund projects focusing on innovative conservation approaches and technologies. Individual grants up to $50,000 can be used to fund up to 50% of the total cost of a project lasting one to three years.
Proposals must be received by August 7, 2015.

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Permalink Conservation Innovation Grants in Maryland

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Maryland requests applications for Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies. Maryland NRCS anticipates that the amount available for support of this program in Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 will be $200,000. Funds will be awarded through a statewide competitive grants process.
Applications are due by August 12, 2015.

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Permalink Specialty Crop Research Initiative/Citrus Disease Research and Extension

The Specialty Crop Research Initiative Citrus Disease Research and Extension, administered by USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, is offering matching grants to conduct research and extension activities, technical assistance, and development activities to: (a) combat citrus diseases and pests, including huanglongbing and the Asian citrus psyllid, and (b) provide support for the dissemination and commercialization of relevant information, techniques, and technologies. Applications may be submitted by Federal agencies, national laboratories, colleges and universities, research institutions and organizations, private organizations or corporations, State Agricultural Experiment Stations, Cooperative Extension Services, individuals, or groups consisting of two or more of these entities. A total of $23 million in matching funding is available.
Applications are due by August 14, 2015.

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Permalink Risk Management Education Partnerships Program

USDA Risk Management Agency is accepting applications for $2 million in grants to create risk management education and training programs, including development of general nationwide crop-insurance education. The program provides organizations with resources to develop training and education tools to help farmers and ranchers effectively manage long-term risks and challenges.
Applications are due by August 14, 2015.

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Permalink Crop Insurance in Targeted States Program

USDA Risk Management Agency has announced the availability of $5 million for the Crop Insurance in Targeted States Program. The program provides funding for the development of crop insurance education programs in 16 states targeting underserved producers. These states are Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Applications are due by August 14, 2015.

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Permalink Promote Public Awareness and Implementation of Farm Bill Activities in Rhode Island

USDA NRCS Rhode Island State Office is seeking to partner with and support the efforts of natural resource conservation partners and to promote public awareness and implementation of Farm Bill activities including conducting conservation outreach workshops, developing an outreach database, providing conservation planning assistance, and offering training that will help educate Rhode Island's farm community, private landowners, conservation organizations, cooperating agencies, and general citizenry. As many as six cooperative agreements totaling $250,000 are planned.
Applications are due by August 24, 2015.

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Permalink CHS Classroom Grant

Five CHS/National Agriculture in the Classroom grants of $1,500 will be awarded to kindergarten through 12th grade core-education teachers whose innovative classroom projects use agricultural concepts to teach reading, writing, math, nutrition, science, and/or social studies. The CHS Classroom Grant Program is designed to fund projects that will educate K-12 students about the importance of agriculture and allow teachers to use agricultural concepts to teach core subject areas. Those who receive one of the five grants will be required to use at least two lesson plans from the National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix or two lesson plans from a state Agriculture in the Classroom program. In addition, grant proposals must demonstrate how local farmers, ranchers, or agriculture industry representatives will be involved in the project.
The deadline for grant proposals is September 15, 2015.

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Permalink North Dakota Grape, Wine, and Fruit Promotion Fund

The mission of the Grape, Wine and Fruit Promotion Fund is to provide research and promotion in support of the grape and wine industry in North Dakota. The Grape and Wine Advisory Committee is accepting proposals for grant funding totalling $64,000 to support grape and wine research projects in North Dakota and approximately $16,000 to promote and market the grape and wine industry in North Dakota.
Applications are due by September 15, 2015.

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Permalink Local Foods, Local Places Technical Assistance

Local Foods, Local Places will provide direct technical support to selected communities. A team of experts will help community members develop action plans that use local foods to support healthy families and communities and to drive downtown and neighborhood revitalization. The assistance process features a community workshop that brings people together to develop shared goals and steps to achieve them. Together, EPA, USDA, CDC, DOT, ARC, and DRA are investing $800,000 in this round of Local Foods, Local Places.
Application deadline is September 15, 2015.

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Permalink Wisconsin Small Farm Anaerobic Digester Program

The Small Farm Anaerobic Digester Program is offering incentives for cost-effective anaerobic digester systems to be installed and operational at small to mid-sized farms. These funds will be available through a competitive request for proposals (RFP) process. The Project's incentive amount is determined based on the estimated first year net energy production (or offset) of the system. Applicants must propose a $/kWh and/or $/Therm amount, up to $0.50/kWh and $1.00/Therm. Incentives may not exceed 50% of project cost.
Proposals must be submitted by September 25, 2015.

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Permalink Ceres Trust Organic Research Initiative

Ceres Trust, a privately administered charitable trust based in the Midwest, offers a competitive Organic Research Initiative program that provides grants of up to $60,000 per year for up to three years to universities and other nonprofit applicants in the North Central Region. Ceres Trust wishes to fund research that will deepen our knowledge of how the natural systems that sustain life on earth function, and research that will apply that knowledge to delineate farming methods that protect and work in concert with nature to create truly sustainable and resilient farming systems. Examples of priority research areas are listed online.
Applications are due by September 25, 2015.

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Permalink Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program

USDA is accepting applications for loans and grants to support business expansion, create jobs, and increase economic opportunities in rural communities through the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program. Funding to support $14.190 million in loans and $2.086 million in grants is currently available. RMAP provides loans and grants to Microenterprise Development Organizations (MDOs) to help microentrepreneurs – very small businesses with 10 or fewer employees – access capital to start or grow businesses. MDOs use the funds to provide training and technical assistance to small businesses or to establish revolving loan funds that provide micro-loans, typically $5,000 to $50,000, to rural microentrepreneurs.
Applications must be received on the last day prior to the beginning of each Federal fiscal quarter to be considered for funding in that quarter.

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Permalink Minnesota Rural Finance Authority Avian Influenza Low-Interest Loans

Minnesota poultry farmers who have suffered losses due to highly pathogenic avian influenza are eligible for disaster loans through the Minnesota Rural Finance Authority (RFA). The RFA has been appropriated $10 million to help producers replace commercial poultry flocks or game (backyard) flocks, make building improvements, and cover the loss of revenue. The RFA Disaster Loan Program is available to farmers through their existing agricultural lenders. The current loan interest rate is 0% for up to a period of 10 years. The RFA participation is limited to 45% of the principal amount up to a maximum of $200,000.

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Permalink Organic Certification Cost Share

USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) has announced that approximately $11.9 million in organic certification assistance is available through state departments of agriculture to make organic certification more affordable for organic producers and handlers across the country. Through the National Organic Certification Cost Share Program, $11 million is available to organic farms and businesses nationwide. Through the Agricultural Management Assistance Organic Certification Cost Share Program (AMA), an additional $900,000 is available to organic producers (crop and livestock operators only) in Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming. To receive cost share assistance, certified organic producers and handlers should contact their appropriate state agencies via the contact information on the National Organic Program's (NOP) cost share website.
Funds are available through September 30, 2015.

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Permalink Farm Service Agency Direct Farm Ownership Loan Program

Through the FSA direct farm ownership program, eligible farmers and ranchers can borrow up to $300,000 to buy farmland, construct or repair buildings, pay closing costs, or promote soil and water conservation. The interest rate can be as low as 1.5% with up to 40 years to repay. New farmers and ranchers, military veterans, and underserved farmers and ranchers also are encouraged to apply. Each year Congress targets 80% of available loan funds to beginning and targeted underserved farmers and ranchers. Contact your local FSA office to apply. To find your local FSA county office, visit
Applications must be approved by September 30, 2015, to take advantage of the funding available this fiscal year.

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Permalink WFAN Annual Conference Scholarships

Women, Food & Agriculture Network is offering 15 annual conference scholarships to aspiring or beginning women farmers or current farmland owners in Iowa. The 2015 annual conference is November 6-7 in Davenport, Iowa. This year's theme is Women Protecting Pollinators, Protecting Food. The Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP) Conservation Education Program of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources will reimburse up to $200 in conference-related expenses after selected applicants attend the conference and submit a brief evaluation form. Scholarships are available to women who successfully complete an application and agree to return to their communities after the conference and improve or create pollinator habitat on the land they own, manage, or farm.
Scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to eligible applicants, as long as funding is available.

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Permalink South Dakota Clean Water Act Section 319 Projects

The South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) requests proposals for Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 319(h) funds, for projects that identify and address NPS pollution problems. Projects can be in one of three general categories: watershed, ground water, and information and education.
Applications are due by October 1, 2015.

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Permalink Small Business Innovation Research Program - Phase I

Small businesses and small proprietorships that are in business for profit are eligible to submit applications to this program for up to $100,000 for a Phase I project. Proposed Phase I projects should prove the scientific or technical feasibility of the approach or concept. USDA will support high-quality research or research and development applications containing advanced concepts related to important scientific problems and opportunities that could lead to significant public benefit. Projects dealing with agriculturally related manufacturing and alternative and renewable energy technologies are encouraged across all SBIR topic areas. A total of $9 million in funding is available.
Applications are due October 8, 2015.

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Permalink Illinois Sustainable Agriculture Grant Program

The Illinois Department of Agriculture is seeking proposals (one year only), through its Sustainable Agriculture Grant Program to carry out research, education, and on-farm demonstration projects that address purposes listed in the Sustainable Agriculture Act. The On-Farm Research and Demonstration category is primarily for producers and farmer-based, non-profit organizations. The Outreach and Education category is for projects that will educate the general public about sustainable agriculture and food systems, educate farmers regarding the use of sustainable agriculture practices and alternative marketing strategies, or projects that help build credibility for sustainable agriculture issues. There is also a University Research category. Any unit of government, organization, educational institution, non-profit group or individual is eligible to receive funding through the Sustainable Agriculture Grant Program provided they can demonstrate: (1) an understanding of sustainable agriculture practices/systems and (2) the ability/skills to carry out the project in a timely/professional manner. Competitive grants may be awarded to individuals for up to $10,000 and units of government, non-profit groups, institutions or organizations may apply for up to $20,000 per project in any one year.
Applications must be received by October 15, 2015.

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Permalink Western SARE Professional Development Program Grants

The Administrative Council of the Western Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program is accepting applications for Professional Development Program competitive grants for 2016. These grants help Cooperative Extension Service, Natural Resources Conservation Service and other agricultural professionals in the Western Region increase their understanding and proficiency in sustainable agriculture. Projects must improve the ability of agricultural professionals to conduct educational programs and activities in sustainable agriculture principles and systems and to respond to inquiries on the subject from farmers, ranchers, and the public.
Applications are due October 28, 2015.

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Permalink Connecticut Farm Reinvestment Grant

The Farm Reinvestment Grants provide matching funds to Connecticut farms to expand, diversify, and improve existing working farms through projects with a lifespan of 10 years or more. Connecticut farmers who have filed Schedule F, Form 1120S, or Schedule C for the previous three years can apply for up to $40,000 in matching grants.
Applications are due November 19, 2015.

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Permalink Washington 2015 Drought Emergency Grant Program

The Washington Department of Ecology is accepting grant applications for public projects to help relieve hardships arising from the drought. Grant funds from a $16 million appropriation from the Legislature can be used over the next two years to help protect public health and safety from effects of the drought, and reduce economic or environmental impacts from water shortages. The drought funding will help support projects that ensure reliable public water supplies, augment water supplies for farmers, and rescue or preserve fish runs in streams. Grant money is available to public entities such as cities, public utilities, and irrigation districts.
Applications will be reviewed as received.

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