USDA Seeks Applications To Help Farmers & Ranchers Venture Into New & Better Markets

Bozeman – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced that USDA is accepting applications for grants to help agricultural producers maximize the value of their products and venture into new and better markets.

USDA is making the grants available under the Value-Added Producer Grants [] program. The grants help farmers and ranchers generate new products, create marketing opportunities, and increase their incomes through value-added activities.

Eligible applicants include independent producers, agricultural producer groups, farmer or rancher cooperatives, and majority-controlled producer-based business ventures.

USDA may award up to $75,000 for planning activities or up to $250,000 for working capital expenses related to producing and marketing a value-added agricultural product.

Planning activities may include conducting feasibility studies and developing business plans. Working capital expenses may include costs associated with processing, marketing, advertising, inventory, and salaries.

USDA is particularly interested in applications that will advance Biden-Harris Administration priorities to:

• Reduce climate pollution and increase resilience to the impacts of climate change through economic support to rural communities.

• Ensure all rural residents have equitable access to Rural Development (RD) programs and benefits from RD-funded projects; and

• Help rural communities recover economically through more and better market opportunities and through improved infrastructure.

Applications for 2024 grants are now being accepted.

Paper applications must be postmarked and delivered by mail, email or in person to one of Montana’s six offices [] by 4:30 p.m., MST, April 16, 2024. Electronic applications are due by 9:59 p.m. MST, April 11, 2024.

Additional information is available on page 2919 of the Jan. 17 Federal Register. []

For more information or to apply here in Montana, contact USDA Rural Development Agriculture Producer State Specialist Marlee Johnston, at [email protected].


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