Helena, Mont. – The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) has announced the recipients of nearly $50,000 in mini grant funding from the Growth Through Agriculture program. Grants support the diversification and expansion of 15 Montana Ag businesses from Dixon to Scobey.

“There was incredible interest in the mini grant funding opportunity and the award process was extremely competitive,” said Director Ben Thomas. “There are some great projects that will help these businesses expand their market opportunities, and others that will help build capacity of local food systems.”

These grants have traditionally gone to applicants who demonstrate how their request would expand Montana agriculture. However, given the current public health situation, MDA paid special attention to projects that strengthen and expand local food offerings, distribution, and infrastructure in order to increase community resiliency in this unprecedented time.

 

2020 Growth Through Agriculture Mini Grant Awards

 

Ag Processing Solutions – Great Falls

Grant for $5,000 to purchase equipment for research and development of specialty de-hulled Montana commodities including: hemp, oats, barley, pulses, and flax.

 

Awesome Acres – St. Ignatius

Grant for $4,857.50 to build a certified herb drying facility to enable online and wholesale sales to allow for business growth and adapt to the Coronavirus pandemic.

 

County Rail Farm – Huson

Grant for $3,750 to purchase a cooler for a farm stand that will make fresh produce available to a small, rural community.

 

Delpine Farms – Martinsdale

Grant for $5,000 to purchase equipment to build their mobile, cold-storage farmstand to safely, and efficiently provide fresh produce to surrounding communities.

 

Farver Farms – Scobey

Grant for $1399 to purchase   an annual subscription to “Range Me” virtual marketing platform and enable connection with a broad variety of buyers.

 

Gally’s Brewing – Harlowton

Grant for $1,625 to purchase a grain mill, enabling the brewery to use more Montana grains in their beers

 

Glacier Tilth Farm – Dixon

Grant for $1675 to purchase equipment to expand their self-serve farm store, increase access to fresh produce, grow marketing efforts, and provide a safe food-shopping environment.

 

Lowdown Farm – Charlo

Grant for $493.49 to purchase produce packaging to adapt to COVID-19 affected markets and bring fresh basil to grocery stores and retail markets.

 

Lower Valley Farm – Kalispell

Grant for $4,500 to help adapt the farm and CSA program during the COVID-19 crisis.

 

Madison Farm to Fork – Ennis

Grant for $2,500 to purchase equipment, materials and supplies for potato gardening, beekeeping and food production at Ennis schools for student and community education.

 

Mill Crick Farm – Hamilton

Grant for $5,000 for construction of a pack shed for produce washing and storage that will increase production and create a year-round position on the farm.

 

Montana CiderWorks – Sula

Grant for $5,000 for web development to expand distribution to include online, direct-to customer sales in 42 states.

 

Mountain Meat Shares – Arlee

Grant for $1,460 to purchase a trailer for freezers to allow for an expanded delivery area.

 

Mountain View Growers – Kalispell

Grant for $4,500 to create an e-commerce website which will increase food access through online produce subscriptions.

 

Paradise Permaculture Institute – Livingston

Grant for $4,000 to purchase equipment for a produce washing and processing station to increase production of produce that supplies food stores, restaurants, and farm to school programs in the Livingston area.

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Montana Department of Agriculture

Northern Ag Network

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