Deadline for Growth Through Agriculture Grants & Loans Approaching
Submit Proposal by Monday, September 15, 2014
The Agriculture Development Council is requesting grant and loan applications for the Growth Through Agriculture (GTA) program to help strengthen and diversify Montana’s agricultural industry through new agricultural products and processes. Over $330,000 was awarded last application cycle.
“The grants and loans the Agriculture Development Council approve through the GTA program have helped dozens of businesses get the capital they need to grow and create jobs while adding value to our agriculture sector,” said Governor Steve Bullock. “With a new round of applications, comes opportunity to start, grow, and expand the agricultural businesses in our state.”
The goal of the Governor’s Main Street Montana Project is to create a dynamic private-public partnership and build and implement a business plan for Montana by Montanans. One objective is to promote Montana agricultural products by adding value to what we grow and produce.
“This program has aided in the success of many agriculture businesses. The Council is targeting proposals that focus on irrigation projects that serve multiple users, malting production, and/or businesses transitioning beyond direct sales. Businesses that meet these criteria will be eligible for zero interest rate loans in addition to grants,” explained Director Ron de Yong. “Businesses should get their applications in as soon as possible.”
Eligible projects can be awarded up to $50,000 in grant funding or receive up to a $100,000 low interest loan.
Some projects that were funded during the 2014 fiscal year include a grant of $24,500 to Powder River Meat Company in Terry, Mont. to purchase meat processing equipment and assist with construction costs. Root Cellar Foods out of Bozeman purchased a commercial food washer with a grant of $38,550. And, finally, Tom Britz with Britz Ranch received $42,000 to purchase and install a commercial hops harvester on his hops farm near Kalispell.
To submit an application and view a list of eligible activities, businesses should visit the Growth Through Agriculture website and follow the application instructions or call (406) 444-0511. The Council strongly encourages applicants to contact their local economic development organization for assistance with their application or, as needed, with business and marketing plans. The next application deadline will be January 30, 2015.
The Montana Department of Agriculture’s mission is to protect producers and consumers, and to enhance and develop agriculture and allied industries. For more information on the Montana Department of Agriculture, visit agr.mt.gov.