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This 25-year old program provides small grants to test ideas that could conserve natural resources enhance profitability, and improve life on the farm.
Applications from farmers receive priority, but the program also funds Minnesota nonprofit and educational organizations as long as Minnesota farmers are meaningfully involved in the project. Projects can last for up to three years, and applicants may receive up to $25,000 for their projects, although many request less. Grantees must be willing to share what they learn with others.
Applicants must live or work in Minnesota and demonstrations must occur on farms located in the state. An applicant is eligible to receive only one MDA sustainable agriculture grant at a time. Grantees who complete projects are eligible to receive additional grants to either continue the project or for a new idea.
Please review the 2015-2016 Sustainable Agriculture Demonstration Grant RFP Fact Sheet (PDF: 232 KB / 4 pages) which contains program background information and guidelines. Reviewer scoring criteria can be found on page 4.
The program objectives are to explore the profitability, energy efficiency, and benefits of sustainable agriculture practices and systems from production through marketing. Grants are available to fund on-farm research and demonstrations and may include, but are not limited to:
The program does not fund projects that duplicate previously funded projects. It may, however, fund similar projects in parts of the state where the practice or system is still considered new or innovative. We encourage you to read prior issues of the Greenbook, which contains summaries and locations of previous grants. Using the Greenbook will help you design a competitive project.
A total of nearly $250,000 is available this year.
Application Deadline: December 15, 2015, 4:00 PM, CST.
We strongly encourage you to Apply on-line. For instructions on how to register to apply, review this tutorial (PDF: 867 KB / 8 pages).
*If you would prefer an electronic or paper copy of the application, please contact Julie LaClair at 651-201-6135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Submit all questions regarding the RFP to Julie LaClair at email@example.com. All questions received, along with the answers to those questions, will be posted on the FAQ page.
Julianne LaClair, J.D., Grant Specialist
Ag Marketing & Development Division
Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA), 625 Robert Street N, St. Paul, MN 55155-2538, firstname.lastname@example.org