ST. PAUL, Minn. — Minnesota farmers, educational institutions, individuals at educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations interested in researching sustainable agriculture practices and systems can now apply for funding through the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA).
The Agricultural Growth, Research, and Innovation (AGRI) Sustainable Agriculture Demonstration Grant Program funds innovative projects that explore the energy efficiency, environmental benefits, or profitability of sustainable agricultural techniques or systems, from production through marketing. The MDA will award up to $350,000 in grants using a competitive review process.
Applicants may request up to $50,000 per project. The first $25,000 does not need to be matched by the applicants. For requests between $25,000 and $50,000, applicants must provide a dollar-for-dollar match on the amount above $25,000.
Past grants have funded a wide range of projects, such as exploring cover crops and crop rotation; conservation tillage; input reduction strategies; integrated pest management; and alternative energies such as wind, methane, and biomass.
Projects may last two to three years and need to take place on Minnesota farms, and grantees must be willing to share what they learn with others. Grant projects are published annually in the MDA’s Greenbook, which provides a summary of each project along with results, management tips, locations of previous projects, and other resources.
Funding for this program is made available through the AGRI Program, which administers grants to farmers, agribusinesses, schools, and more throughout the state of Minnesota. The AGRI Program exists to advance Minnesota’s agricultural and renewable energy sectors.
Applications will be accepted through 4 p.m. on Thursday, December 7, 2023, and funding will be awarded in early 2024. For more information and application details, visit the AGRI Sustainable Agriculture Demonstration Grant webpage.
— Minnesota Department of Agriculture