May 3, 2017

Funding Opportunities for Farmers

The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) is accepting applications from farmers who wish to participate in these Department programs in Fiscal Year 2018.  Interested farm operators are encouraged to review program information and applications on Department web pages found at www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/agr/about/divisions/dacta-grants-lc.htmlDue date for applications for the following three programs is May 15, 2017.

 
Farm Viability Enhancement Program (FVEP)
This popular business planning and technical assistance program provides management advice and grants from $25,000 up to $100,000 to implement farm growth and sustainability strategies.  This is not a reimbursement program. Farm operators receive grant awards for signing a 5 or 10 year Agricultural Covenant. Typical uses of funds from the Farm Viability Program include building new or repairing farm structures, modernizing field equipment, purchasing delivery vehicles and tractors, and building or improving retail marketing structures or farm food processing facilities.
  
FVEP Applications and program information are available here.
If you would like an application mailed to you contact Craig Richov at 617-626-1725 or Craig.Richov@state.ma.us.  
 
APR Improvement Program (AIP) – for APR farms
The APR Improvement Program (AIP) helps sustain active commercial farming on land that has already been protected through the Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) Program.  AIP provides business planning assistance to farmers selected to participate in the program and grants from $25,000 up to $100,000 may be available on a reimbursement basis to improve farm productivity and profitability of participating APR farms.  AIP funds are used primarily for capital improvements, such as constructing or repairing barns, farm stands, livestock housing, or processing facilities; or land management, such as reseeding hay fields, pasture improvements, fencing, or establishing perennial crops.
 
AIP applications and program information are available here.
If you would like an application mailed to you contact Melissa Adams at 413-548-1904 or Melissa.L.Adams@state.ma.us.
 
Matching Enterprise Grants for Agriculture (MEGA) - for Beginning Farmers in MA
The Matching Enterprise Grants for Agriculture (MEGA) Program helps with business expansion on new and beginning farms. MEGA provides business planning assistance and grant funds of up to $10,000 on a one to one matching cash reimbursement basis It is the objective of the MEGA Program to assist beginning farmers in their first through fifth year of business who aspire to develop their farms into commercially viable operations.  Funds are used for equipment, infrastructure or other capital improvements identified through the business planning process.
 
MEGA applications and program information are available here.
If you would like an application mailed to you contact Melissa Adams at 413-548-1904 or Melissa.L.Adams@state.ma.us.