FREDERICK, Md. – Applications are being accepted from July 1 until July 31 for Frederick County Government’s new Agriculture Innovation Grants. The program is designed to keep agriculture a viable and profitable industry for future generations of farmers, a goal of the award-winning Livable Frederick master plan. Farmers may apply for competitive grants of $5,000 or more to help expand or diversify their business operations.
To be eligible, applicants must be a crop or livestock producer, a value-added producer, an agricultural cooperative, a seafood processor, or a primary or secondary timber products processor. Funds may be used for research and development, production buildings, major fixtures, or processing facilities.
Information on the program, including how to apply, is available online at www.DiscoverFrederickMd.com/ag_innovation_grant. If a printed application is required, contact Katie Stevens, Associate Director of Agriculture Business Development in the Office of Economic Development. She can be reached by phone at 240-285-2795 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A review committee will score all applications based on established metrics and then recommend awards to the County Executive. The process is expected to take four to six weeks after the application period closes.
More than 30 applications were received for the Agricultural Innovation Grant Program’s first round last January. At that time $306,000 in funds was awarded to 14 farming operations, ranging from orchards and creameries to hog nurseries. The projects selected for funding are anticipated to create 11 full-time and 17 part-time positions in Frederick County.