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Farm Business Management


Agricultural Funding Opportunities 

There are many opportunities for existing and beginning farmers to access loans and grant programs, both locally and at the federal level. Below are some of these funding opportunities.

CURRENT

Young Farmer Grant Program

The National Young Farmers Coalition’s grant program helps young and beginning farmers and ranchers start up and grow their businesses. The program will provide 50 awards of $5,000 – 45 grants will go to businesses already in operation, and five to projects starting in 2021. Learn more and apply by January 15.

Agriculture Risk Management Education Partnerships Grants

USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) requests applications for this competitive grants program to provide resources for developing and delivering agricultural risk management education materials. The anticipated amount available is approximately $9.6 million for support of five grant awards under this program. Qualified public and private entities may apply, including colleges and universities, Federal, State, and local agencies, nonprofit and for-profit private organizations or corporations, and other entities. Learn more and apply by January 21.

Growing Spaces Urban Farming Grant

Urban farming organizations, communities, and educational institutions are invited to apply to receive an in-kind donation from Growing Spaces, estimated to be approximately $40,000. Considerations include the impact and reach of the proposed project to an urban, low-income, and/or minority community, food desert status, organizational stability, and climate. Learn more and apply by January 31.

Sustainable Agricultural Systems Request for Applications Now Open

The Agriculture and Food Research Initiative’s Sustainable Agricultural Systems grant program will fund projects that significantly improve the supply of affordable, safe, nutritious, and accessible agricultural products while fostering economic development and rural prosperity in America. NIFA seeks applications that take a systems approach for projects focused on the themes in the USDA Science Blueprint. Learn more and apply by July 1, 2021.

LOCAL

Sullivan County Agri-Business Revolving Loan Fund

The Sullivan County Revolving Loan Funds provide seed capital and early-stage loans to eligible entrepreneurial companies who want to establish or expand within the county. Special consideration shall be given to assisting businesses owned and operated by persons of low-to-moderate income, as required by the specific program. For more information call the Sullivan County Division of Planning and Community Development at 845-807-0527 or visit their website.

Sullivan County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) Agri-Business Revolving Loan Fund

The IDA administers a revolving loan fund for agri-businesses. For more information on the loan program and an application, contact the County of Sullivan IDA office at 845-295-2603 or visit their website.

Sullivan County Partnership for Economic Development

Through the Sullivan Investments Revolving Loan Program and the Incubator Without Walls Revolving Loan Program, the Partnership provides financing along with technical assistance to businesses. For more information on the loan program and an application contact the SC Partnership office at 845-794-1110 or Sullivan County Partnership for Economic Development.

STATE

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets

The Department offers various funding opportunities to ensure the growth of New York’s agricultural communities. These opportunities touch many parts of the diverse agricultural sector: connecting farmers with new markets; supporting marketing efforts for producers and retailers; getting local, healthy foods into schools; improving infrastructure on fairgrounds and in companion animal shelters statewide; ensuring climate-resilient farming practices; and more.

Dairy Transitions Farmland Protection Initiative - This grant opportunity is being offered to implement conservation easement projects with owners of viable agricultural lands that are associated with a dairy farm operation at risk of conversion to non-farm uses.

visit: https://agriculture.ny.gov/funding-opportunities to explore relevant opportunities.

FEDERAL

USDA Farm Service Agency Farm Loans

By providing access to credit, FSA's Farm Loan Program offers opportunities for  

  • Beginning farmers, racial and ethnic minority farmers and women producers 
  • Operations using alternative farming methods such as hydroponics, aeroponics, vertical farming, and freight container farming
  • Young people actively involved in agricultural youth organizations needing financial assistance for income-producing, educational, agricultural programs.
  • Urban farmers and roof-top producer
  • A value-added, direct sale, organic, and specialty crop operations

TO

  • Start, improve, expand, transition, market, and strengthen family farming and ranching operations. 

More information on FSA Farm Loan Programs

Additional USDA Farm Programs:

USDA Rural Development:

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)

Farm Service Agency (FSA)

Dairy Margin Protection Program

USDA National Agricultural Library: Grants & Loans for Farmers

Although limited, financial support for small farms and farm-related businesses is available from a variety of federal, state, and local agencies, and from non-governmental organizations. Grants & Loans for Farmers

PRIVATE

KIVA loans:

Kiva is a non-profit that expands access to capital for entrepreneurs around the world.

Farm Credit East:

Farm Credit East is part of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide agricultural network providing credit and affiliated services to those in agriculture and related industries across the United States.

ENERGY

NYSERDA

NYSERDA offers financial assistance to identify electric and natural gas energy efficiency measures for eligible farms and on-farm producers, including but not limited to: dairies, orchards, greenhouses, vegetables, vineyards, grain dryers, and poultry/egg. Farms must be customers of a New York State investor-owned utility and contribute to the System Benefits Charge (SBC). Please check your farm’s current utility bills.

Contact

Ashley Tully
Agriculture Program Coordinator
aet92@cornell.edu
(845) 292-6180 Ext. 112

Last updated January 12, 2021