Fund a Farmer Grant

Funder: Food Animal Concern Trust (FACT)

Deadline: December 2, 2019

Who is eligible to apply: Independent family farmers located in the continental U.S. who raise beef cattle, broiler chickens, dairy cows, goats, laying hens, pigs, sheep and/or turkeys may be eligible to apply.

Projects that are a good fit: Projects that improve farm animal welfare, such as building mobile housing, constructing fences, laying water lines on pasture, and much more.

Maximum award: Amount varies based on type of grant application. Certification, Capacity and Pasture grants available

Link to Application:

Northeast SARE Farmer Grants

Funder: Northeast SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education)

Deadline: December 3, 2019

Who is eligible to apply:  Commercial farmers in the Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, or Washington, D.C

Projects that are a good fit: For commercial producers who have an innovative idea they want to test using a field trial, on-farm demonstration, marketing initiative, or other technique. A technical advisor–often an extension agent, crop consultant, or other service professional–must also be involved. Projects should seek results other farmers can use, and all projects must have the potential to add to our knowledge about effective sustainable practices.

Maximum award: $15,000

Link to Application:

Farm to School Grant Program 

Funder: USDA Food and Nutrition Service

Deadline: December 13, 2019

Who is eligible to apply: Schools, State & local agencies, small and medium agricultural producers or groups, and nonprofits

Projects that are a good fit: Programs that increase access to local food in eligible schools providing students with nutritious meals, while also supporting local producers. 

Maximum award:  $20,000-$100,000 depending on whether it is a planning or implementation grant

Link to Application:

Agriculture and Food Research Initiative – Foundational and Applied Science Program


Deadline: December 18, 2019  (deadlines change with priority area, review RFA for accurate deadlines)

Who is eligible to apply: Nonprofits, Extension & Institutions of higher education
Projects that are a good fit: Research-only, extension-only, and integrated research, education and/or extension projects. The six priority areas are: Plant Health and Production and Plant Products; Animal Health and Production and Animal Products; Food Safety, Nutrition, and Health; Bioenergy, Natural Resources, and Environment; Agriculture Systems and Technology; and Agriculture Economics and Rural Communities

Maximum award: Depends on Priority area

Link to Application:

Pennsylvania Fresh Food Financing Initiative (PA FFFI)

Funder: The Food Trust

Deadline: December 31, 2019 (or until funding runs out)

Who is eligible to apply: for-profit, nonprofit, or cooperative entities

Projects that are a good fit: Projects must expand access to high-quality, affordable and nutritious food in under-resourced neighborhoods via a retail outlet. They must also fit local community needs and demonstrate support from local residents. The project must be located in an area that is low-to-moderate income. Eligible projects include the development, renovation and expansion of: Grocery stores, Corner stores, Convenience stores, Neighborhood stores, Bodegas, Food hubs, Mobile markets, Co-ops, Farmers markets, Food aggregation and processing centers with a direct connection to direct-to-consumer retail outlets.

Maximum award: Financing packages may include loans, grants, and other funding tools on a case-by-case basis to appropriately meet the needs of each project

Link to Application:

USDA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, Standard (USDA BFRDP)


Deadline: February 13, 2020

Who is eligible to apply: State Cooperative Extension Services; Federal, State, municipal or tribal agencies; community based organizations (CBOs); nongovernmental organizations (NGOs); junior and four-year colleges or universities or foundations maintained by a college or university; and private for-profit organizations. Inclusion of beginning and/or non-beginning farmers and ranchers as part of the collaborative group is strongly encouraged
Projects that are a good fit: The primary goal of BFRDP is to help beginning farmers and ranchers  enter and/or improve their successes in farming, ranching, and management of

nonindustrial private forest lands, through support for projects that provide education,

mentoring, and technical assistance to give beginning farmers and ranchers the knowledge,

skills, and tools needed to make informed decisions for their operations, and enhance their

Sustainability. The programs developed should target farmers and ranchers who have 10 or fewer years of experience. 

Maximum award:  $200,000 per year for up to three (3) years for large standard grants; $100,000 per year for up to three (3) years for small standard grants; and less than $50,000 for a simplified standard grant application process for one (1) year

Link to Application:

Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)

Funder: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)

Deadline: Open, deadlines can vary by location. Contact your local NRCS office.

Who is eligible to apply: Farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners who own or rent agricultural land.**

Projects that are a good fit: Includes but not limited to: Buffer strips • Contour strip cropping • Cover crops • Critical area plantings • Erosion control • Grassed waterways • Grazing management • Livestock water systems • Manure management systems including storage structures and barnyard runoff protection • Nutrient management • Pollinator and wildlife habitat • Stream exclusion

Maximum award: Variable depending on project

**Effective March 23, 2018, landowners and producers who participate in Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) financial assistance programs and conservation easement programs as a legal entity are now exempt from the requirement to obtain a DUNS number or to register SAM.

Pennsylvania Dairy Investment Program (PDIP)

Funder: Northeast SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education)

Deadline: Open

Who is eligible to apply:  PA businesses, nonprofits, schools and institutions of higher education

Projects that are a good fit: Research & Development, transitioning to organic, value-added processing, and marketing

Maximum award: Research and development: $100,000, Transition to organic: $50,000, Value-added processing: • On-farm or single producer project: $50,000 • Cooperative, processing plant, or multi-producer project: $500,000, Marketing: $100,000

Link to Application:

SFM Consulting Agricultural Research Grant

Funder: SFM Consulting LLC

Deadline: Open

Who is eligible to apply: Farms or farming businesses

Projects that are a good fit: A current agriculture land use practice, technique, or concept in need of financial support with a focus on soil protection or soil free farming.

Maximum award: $10,000

Grants are hard work.

Asking for expert help is never a bad idea.