WALPOLE, N.H. — The Cheshire County Conservation District, the Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship, and National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) are partnering to host a free 7-week-long business planning course (waived fee of $600!) for speciality crop producers in New Hampshire. Specialty crops are defined in law as, “fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits and horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture”. Read the full definition here.
Throughout the course, farmers will learn how to enhance the competitiveness of their business, receive technical assistance, receive peer support from other speciality crop producers, create a business plan, and will receive a $2,000 stipend to implement their business plan after successfully completing the course.
The application is due on November 30th, 2021. Interested applicants can attend an optional zoom information session on November 4th, 2021 from 12:00pm-1:00pm, join here!
The course will meet in person at the Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship in Keene, NH every Wednesday from 4:00pm-7:00pm, January 12th, 2022 through February 23rd, 2022.
More information about the course and application can be found at: https://www.
Registration is limited and CCCD, HG, and NCAT reserves the right to select participants it deems would benefit most from business planning training.
Applicants from Cheshire County, NH will receive selection priority but all NH specialty crop producers are eligible and encouraged to submit applications.
Historically underserved, beginning, limited resource, socially disadvantaged, and veteran farmer applicants will receive selection priority and are encouraged to apply. Priority will be given to farms that demonstrate the following criteria:
- Must be a specialty crop producer in New Hampshire (or planning to be)
- Producers Needs/Goals are a good match with program curriculum
- Initial plans to use the $2,000 stipend is appropriate
- Demonstrated interest in improving profitability and efficiency of your business
- Demonstrated trajectory for growth/plans for growth
- Percentage of your income coming from your farm
- Demonstrated readiness to participate, strong interest, can commit to fully to the course
- Willingness to complete the Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship intake form that is required for participation.
- Willingness to comply with all relevant Covid-19 safety protocols such as masking and social distancing
Funding for this program is provided in part by the New Hampshire Department Of Agriculture and the Markets & Food USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant Program.
About The Cheshire County Conservation District:
The Cheshire County Conservation District promotes the conservation and responsible use of our natural and agricultural resources for the people of Cheshire County by providing technical, financial, and educational assistance. Our goal is to encourage the stewardship of healthy soils, productive ecologically sound farms, diverse wildlife, productive sustainable forests, healthy watersheds, and clean water to ensure those resources are available for future generations. Established in 1945, the Conservation District operates out of Walpole, NH where we work alongside the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and other conservation partners. For more information, or to request a printed application, contact Amanda Littleton at 603-756-2988 ext.4 or email at amanda@cheshireconservation.
About Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship:
The Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Its mission is to provide the space, tools, and connections that innovative entrepreneurs need to build strong businesses, thriving local economies, and vibrant communities in the Monadnock Region.Their success supports Hannah Grimes’ broader vision of a sustainable thriving local economy and vibrant community built upon the region’s heritage, culture, natural resources, and the civic-minded entrepreneurial spirit of its people.
Between the Business Incubator Program, Startup Lab, the Hive Co-Working Space, leadership programs, workshops, pro bono coaching, office space, the PitchFork local investing program, networking events, and a locally-based retail marketplace, the Hannah Grimes Center delivers the tools that help organizations take root, grow, and thrive.
The Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship
25 Roxbury Street, Keene, NH 03431
About the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT):
The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) has been promoting sustainable living for over 40 years. Established in 1976, NCAT is a national nonprofit with a mission of helping people build resilient communities through local and sustainable solutions that reduce poverty, strengthen self-reliance, and protect natural resources. NCAT provides research-based technical assistance and information in the fields of sustainable & organic agriculture, sustainable energy, and community development to individuals, businesses, and organizations. NCAT’s nationally recognized ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture Program strives to help smaller-scale family farmers and ranchers practice sustainable production that conserves natural resources and maximizes profits. NCAT is headquartered in Butte, MT with the Northeast Regional Office located in Keene, NH.
–Cheshire County Conservation District
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