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Home > Grants, Loans & Financing > Grant Opportunities > Value Added Grant Program

Minnesota Value Added Grant Program


Supports Minnesota agricultural producers and processors to increase sales of Minnesota agricultural products by expanding markets.

Who's Eligible

Individuals (farmers) or businesses, agricultural cooperatives, local government entities.  All applicants must be in good standing (no back taxes, no defaults on Minnesota-backed financing, acceptable performance on past MDA grants, and in compliance with current state regulations).  See RFP for more detail.

What's Eligible and Amount Available

Grants are for equipment purchases or physical improvements and are intended to:

  • Start, expand, or update livestock product processing businesses;
  • Purchase equipment to start, upgrade, or modernize value-added businesses;
  • Increase the use and processing of Minnesota agricultural products (required for all grants);
  • Increase on-farm food safety (ex. Implementing a food safety plan); and
  • Increase farmers’ processing and aggregating capacity to sell to schools, hospitals, or other institutions.

Applications that have a meat processing, Farm to School, or other institution component, or are addressing a Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) or similar type of food safety plan will receive priority.

Grants will be awarded through the application and competitive review process.

The MDA anticipates awarding up to $1,000,000 per round of applications through the Value Added Grant Program.  Equipment purchases or physical improvements projects:  Up to 25% of the total project cost may be reimbursed by the grant award; maximum grant award is $150,000; minimum grant award is $1,000.

Application Period

The Fiscal Year (FY)2016 application periods are open from August 1, 2015 to October 6, 2015 and from January 4, 2016 to March 8, 2016.

Link to Application

Apply on-line. 
For instructions on how to register to apply, review this tutorial (PDF: 867 KB / 8 pages).

Request for Proposal (RFP) and Fillable Application (PDF: 135 KB / 11 pages)
** MAC Users: Please complete the form using Adobe Reader. **
(Note: this is the new, Round 1 of Fiscal Year 2016 application)

See an example of a completed Value Added application (PDF: 504 KB / 8 pages)

Frequently Asked Questions

All questions regarding the RFP should be submitted in writing to Ann Kuzj at All questions received, along with the answers to those questions, will be posted on the FAQ page.

FY15 Recipients

Summary of FY2015 funded grant projects.

MDA Contact

Ann Kuzj, Program Administrator, 651-201-6028

Ag Marketing & Development Division