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Farmer Grants

Grants to USA Farmers in Northeastern
States to Develop Sustainable Farming Practices

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE)

Deadline Date:

12/03/19 5:00 PM ET


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Grants ranging from $2,500 to $15,000 to USA commercial farmers and food producers in northeastern States to develop new sustainable products and methods. Applications are accepted from farmers and operations in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Washington, DC.

The goal of the Farmer Grant program is to develop, refine, and demonstrate new sustainable techniques and explore innovative ideas developed by farmers across the Northeast region.

Farmer Grant projects should seek new knowledge other farmers can use and address questions that are directly linked to improved profits, better stewardship, and stronger rural communities.

Farmer Grant recipients are expected to collect and manage reliable data about their project and convey this information clearly through annual and final reports.

Funds can be used to conduct the research project including paying farmers for their time, for project-related materials, for project costs like consulting fees or soil tests, and any communications or outreach expenses associated with telling others about project results.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 175260

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

Up to 30

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants are capped at $15,000. Awards range from $2,500 to the $15,000 maximum.

Term of Contract:

Most projects run for one year, but multiyear projects are accepted. All projects must be completed by November 30, 2023.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

To apply, you must be a commercial farmer in Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, or Washington, D.C.

Eligible applicants must run commercial operations with an established annual farm income of at least $1,000 from the harvest and sale of crop, nursery, livestock, greenhouse, or aquaculture products sold on a regular basis.

Managers on farms affiliated with an institution or a nonprofit organization are also eligible to apply if they commercially produce and sell agricultural products. Applications must use the name that appears on the 501(c) (3) of the organization.

Funds may not be used for:
- Capital costs, including the purchase of land, buildings, livestock, machinery, orchards, greenhouses, and other major farm improvements, fixtures and expansion expenses;
- Normal operating expenses. Do not ask for specific overhead costs in the form of utility bills, general maintenance, general supplies, or any other expenses that would be there in the absence of the project.
- Incentive offers and promotional items, including items of clothing, swag, giveaways, subsidies, raffles, and gift cards;
- Purchase of motorized vehicles and general use equipment;
- Cell phone charges, even if you use your cell phone in the course of the project;
- Food expenses unless necessary for the continuity of a training event or project meeting; and
- Expenses outside the grant period. SARE cannot pay for expenses incurred before the award start date or after the end date on the grant contract.

Pre-proposal Conference:

A Farmer Grants webinar will be held on October 23 from noon to 1:00 PM.

For more information and to register:

Pre-Application Information:

Grant Timeline:
- Online system opens for submissions: October 22, 2019
- Application deadline: December 3, 2019, 5:00 PM ET
- Review panel ranks applications: December 2019 to January 2020
- Northeast SARE Administrative Council makes final selections: February 2020
- Awards announced: February 24, 2020
- Start date for awarded projects: February 24, 2020

All projects must enlist a technical advisor. Before writing anything, it’s important to identify a technical advisor and talk your project through with them. The role of the advisor is to provide support where needed to the farmer applicant. A letter of commitment from your technical advisor is required. The letter should describe their background, expertise and involvement that confirms their level of commitment to the project. The letter must be uploaded to your application.

Applications are limited to one per farm per year.

Grant overview:

Tips for submitting a strong Farmer Grant proposal:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

Questions may be directed to:

Carol Delaney, Farmer Grants Coordinator
802/651-8335 ext. 555

You may also contact your State’s Farmer Grants Coordinator.

Northeast SARE
University of Vermont
140 Kennedy Drive, Suite 201
South Burlington, VT 05403


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Connecticut;   Delaware;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New York City;   New York;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   Vermont;   Washington, DC;   West Virginia