Grant Programs and Financial Options for Farmers & Food Entrepreneurs

food safety datcp buy local buy wiAre you looking for ways to develop your innovative agricultural business?

Join us for a workshop designed to help you identify which grants or other financial options might be right for you. This workshop will discuss ways to plan your project and strengthen your application.  Specific grant programs to be covered include:


  • USDA’s Value Added Producer Grant (VAPG) program provides planning and working capital funds to farmers and farmer-based enterprises to develop and implement value-added ventures.
  • USDA’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grant program funds research, marketing and demonstration projects.
  • USDA’s Specialty Crop Block Grant (SCBG) program funds endeavors that enhance the competitiveness of Wisconsin Specialty Crops
  • Wisconsin DATCP’s Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin grant program funds projects that increase the demand for and supply of locally produced foods in Wisconsin.


Dates and Locations

Tuesday, October 28th – Southern WI – Janesville

Rock County Courthouse Conference Room 51 S. Main Street Janesville, WI 53545

to register contact: Kim Mork at or 608-757-5696


Tuesday, November 4th –Central WI – Montello

Marquette County Extension  Building Conference Room 480 Underwood Avenue, Montello, WI 53949

To register contact: Lyssa Seefeldt at or 608-297-3136


Wednesday, November 5th – Northern WI – Ashland

Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center 29270 County Highway G, Ashland, WI 54806

To register contact: Jason Fischbach at or 715-373-6104 ext. 5


Wednesday, November 12th – Eastern WI – Shawano

Angie’s Main Café, 132 South Main Street, Shawano, WI 54166

To register contact:  Jamie Patton at or (715) 526-6136


registration fee of $15 will cover the cost of lunch and materials

If you are interested in attending but need translation assistance,

please inquire with the local registration contact at each location.


Successfully Applying to Agricultural Grant Programs

2014 Workshop Agenda


This workshop is designed to give farmers and agricultural entrepreneurs information, tools, and hands-on training to strengthen grant and loan applications. This workshop will help you create a competitive application and get the financial resources you need to fuel your business.


9:00 AM       Registration

9:30 AM       Welcome and Introductions

Participants are invited to give a brief introduction to their projects

Andrew Bernhardt, UW-Extension/SARE


10:00 AM     Designing a sound project, identifying funding sources and grant-writing basics

Margaret Krome, Michael Fields Agricultural Institute


12:00 PM      Lunch Program – Perspective from a grant recipient:

“How I applied for and used a grant in my agriculture business”


1:00 PM       Grant Programs Highlight Panel

  • WI DATCP Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin – Teresa Engel
  • USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant – Juli Spek
  • USDA Value Added Producer Grant – Mike Daniels
  • USDA SARE Farmer and Rancher Grant – Andrew Bernhardt 

1:45 PM       Hands-on Grant Proposal Evaluation & Development

  • Review and evaluate an actual proposal in groups.

Andrew Bernhardt, UW-Extension/SARE

2:45 PM       Additional Financial Options Panel

  • Farm Service Agency – Farm Loans & micro-loan program
  • Natural Resources Conservation Service – Cost Share Programs
  • Farm Credit System Bank (Badgerland Financial/AgStar) – Loan Program
  • WI DATCP – Got Moo-la Business Resource Guide – Carl Rainey

3:30 PM       Networking and one-on-one Q&A with presenters

4:00 PM       Adjourn 



Michael Fields Agricultural Institute — USDA, Rural Development — USDA, SARE — UW-Cooperative Extension —

WI Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection



An EEO Affirmative Action Employer, University of Wisconsin-Extension provides equal opportunities in employment and programming, including Title IX and ADA requirements.