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At the intersection of food, soil, climate, farming and water.

Listing of Grant and Loan Resources

Michael Fields Grants Advising is a free service available to farmers, farmer organizations and institutions in the Upper Midwest region of the United States: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin. Our grants advisors are available to help identify appropriate grant programs to fit the client’s proposed project, clarify the goals and scope of the project, and review the client’s grant proposal.

The advisors also send out periodic email announcements about state and federal grant programs that may be of interest to farmers and farmer organizations in the target region. To sign up for the email list please email Martin Bailkey, grants@michaelfields.org

The Michael Fields Grants Advising service is jointly funded by Farm Aid, the Wisconsin Farmers Union, and the North Central region of USDA-SARE.

Below is a list of the grant programs and sources of general support we most frequently recommend to clients. If any of these seem to fit the goals of your project, please be in touch!

Primary grants advisor: Martin Bailkey, grants@michaelfields.org

Grant Resources

North Central SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education) https://www.northcentralsare.org

Farmer/Rancher Grant
https://www.northcentralsare.org/Grants/Our-Grant-Programs/Farmer-Rancher-Grant-Program

Partnership Grant
https://www.northcentralsare.org/Grants/Our-Grant-Programs/Partnership-Grant-Program

Professional Development Grant
https://www.northcentralsare.org/Grants/Our-Grant-Programs/Professional-Development-Grant-Program

Youth Educator Grant
https://www.northcentralsare.org/Grants/Our-Grant-Programs/Youth-Educator-Grant-Program

 

USDA-AMS (United States Department of Agriculture – Agricultural Marketing Service)

Farmers Market Promotion Program
https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/grants/fmpp

Local Food Promotion Program
https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/grants/lfpp

Specialty Crop Block Grant (distributed through individual states)
https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/grants/scbgp

Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives
https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/grants/dbi

Sheep Production and Marketing Grant
https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/grants/spmgp

 

USDA Rural Development

Renewable Energy for America Program (REAP)
https://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/rural-energy-america-program-renewable-energy-systems-energy-efficiency

Value Added-Producer Grants
https://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/value-added-producer-grants

 

USDA- NIFA* (National Institute of Food and Agriculture) https://nifa.usda.gov/grants

Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program
https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/beginning-farmer-and-rancher-development-program-bfrdp

Community Food Projects Competitive Grants Program
https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/community-food-projects-cfp-competitive-grants-program

Food and Agriculture Service Learning Program
https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-and-agriculture-service-learning-program

Food Safety Outreach Program
https://www.nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-safety-outreach-program?utm_content=&utm_medium=email&utm_name=&utm_source=govdelivery&utm_term=

* NIFA has a variety of specialized agricultural research and innovation grants available: https://nifa.usda.gov/rfa-list

 

USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement

Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers (2501) Program
https://www.outreach.usda.gov/grants/

 

USDA- NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service)
https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/site/national/home/

Conservation Innovation Grants
https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/programs/financial/cig/

Conservation Stewardship Program
https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/programs/financial/csp/

Environmental Quality Incentives Program
https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/programs/financial/eqip/

 

USDA – Farm Service Agency – Loan Funds Available

Farm Loan Programs
https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/farm-loan-programs/index

Beginning Farmers and Ranchers Loans
https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/farm-loan-programs/beginning-farmers-and-ranchers-loans/index

Minority and Women Farmers and Ranchers Loans
https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/farm-loan-programs/minority-and-women-farmers-and-ranchers/index

Native American Tribal Loans
https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/farm-loan-programs/native-american-loans/index

 

USDA Risk Management

Education Partnerships (State by State)
https://www.rma.usda.gov/Topics/Education-and-Training/Partnership-Program

 

USDA General Support for New Farmers – including Women and Veterans
https://newfarmers.usda.gov

State Departments of Agriculture
State Departments of Agriculture often offer grants for local food marketing, specialty crops, value-added production, urban agriculture, agricultural education, and other areas of interest. Please get in touch with your State Department of Agriculture for more information.

State Extension Offices
While not sources of funding in themselves, local extension agents provide assistance in various areas of farm planning that can help identify specific areas for which to seek funding, such as pasture improvement or new infrastructure elements.

US Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Veterans Business Development
https://www.sba.gov/offices/headquarters/ovbd/resources/1548576

 

Non-Government Support Organizations and Foundations*

Annie’s Organics Grants for Gardens (focused on food education and youth gardens)
https://www.annies.com/giving-back/grants-for-gardens

Blooming Prairie Foundation
http://www.bloomingprairiefoundation.org/

Burt’s Bees Greater Good Foundation (focused on pollinators and pollinator habitat)https://www.burtsbees.com/content/outreach/out-reach-asset.html

Center for Rural Affairs (a guide to funding and financing for beginning farmers)

https://www.cfra.org/resources/beginning_farmer/fundingsources

Clif Bar Small Grants
http://clifbarfamilyfoundation.org/grants-programs/small-grants

Farm Aid Grants (for farm-support organizations)
https://www.farmaid.org/our-work/grant-guidelines/

Farm Aid Farmer Resources Network Directory (access to resources including and beyond financial support)
https://www.farmaid.org/our-work/resources-for-farmers/farmer-resource-network/

Farmer Veteran Coalition (for military veterans beginning to farm)

Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund

Food Animal Concerns Trust
https://foodanimalconcernstrust.org/grants

https://foodanimalconcernstrust.org/pasture-grants (for pasture enhancements)

Frontera Farmer Foundation (for farmers in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin who market in the Chicago area)
https://www.rickbayless.com/foundation/

Fruit Guys
https://fruitguyscommunityfund.org/

* Local and community foundations are also a great resource for community agriculture projects. Contacting your local chamber of commerce is a good place to start looking for local foundations.

For more on MFAI’s Grant Advising Service and how we can help you check out our resource page.