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NOFA-VT has a pool of funds for farmers as up-front grants to fund projects that will improve longer-term resilience on farms and in communities.

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MONTPELIER — The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets announced $500,000 in grants to strengthen Vermont’s specialty crop production.

Specialty crops are fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, horticulture crops — including honey, hops, maple syrup and mushrooms — and nursery crops, including Christmas trees and floriculture.

Two options for money are available. Growers should apply by Feb. 27.

Block Grant

Money from the 2022 Vermont Specialty Crop Block Grant Program will enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops by marketing and promoting specialty crops; assisting growers with research and development; expanding access to specialty crops; or addressing local, regional, and national challenges for producers. Any entity can apply, but projects must benefit more than one specialty crop business, individual or organization.

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To apply, download the Request for Applications at agriculture.vermont.gov/grants/specialtycrop. Applicants must submit a pre-application by Feb. 27, at 11:59 p.m. A review committee will invite the top-ranking projects to submit full applications.

Producer Association Grant

The Specialty Crop Producer Association Grant will establish or strengthen farmer associations and cooperatives that serve Vermont specialty crop businesses. Eligible applicants are producer associations, cooperatives and groups of producers/businesses. Service providers that serve producer associations, cooperatives, and groups of producers are also eligible. This funding opportunity is possible thanks to additional federal funding from a COVID-19 related stimulus bill.

To apply, download the Request for Applications at agriculture.vermont.gov/grants/specialtycrop/producer.

The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets will conduct an information session webinar for all applicants, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. on Jan. 27. Register for the information session webinar at bit.ly/2022SCBGPWebinar.


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