HUGHESVILLE, Md. – The Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission (SMADC) is pleased to announce the 9th Round of the Southern Maryland Farmer Mini-Grant Program.

SMADC will begin accepting Mini-Grant applications on November 1, 2021. The Mini-Grant closes on January 1, 2022, with awards announced by mid-February, 2022.

The Mini-Grant program aligns with SMADC’s mission ‘to support farms and the future of agriculture in Southern Maryland and is designed to assist new and beginning farmers who own or lease existing agricultural properties with small start-up projects, and to assist experienced farmers who are looking to diversify or expand a current agriculture project. The projects should be simple in scope and must be successfully completed within one year.

SMADC awards will be up to $2,000 per applicant and is a one-to-one match by the farmer. A total of $41,195 in funding is available. However, it is anticipated that the number of applicants may exceed the amount of funding available, therefore grant applications will be ranked and awards may be less than the requested amount.

Grant funds may be used for equipment/services that help transition a farm’s sales strategy (such as online sales, home delivery, on-farm sales, etc.), for other projects that allow the farm business to maintain and/or expand sales, for the purchase of foundation livestock, purchase of plant stock, marketing and promotion of current farm operation, new fencing, hoop house, and materials needed for value-added food production and on-farm upgrades to enhance food safety.

“In short, the Mini-Grant truly set us up for success. We were able to professionalize our operation, increase productivity, create professional jars/labels, and have stock on-hand and ready to go as demand increased overnight,” said Kenna Pope Williams, a Round 5 grant recipient, “Our projections for the business were greatly exceeded and our growth continues. We are very grateful to the Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission for awarding us these funds and are excited for the future of our business.”

To date, the program has received 166 applications with 124 funded for a total of $195,813.

For complete details of the SMADC Southern Maryland Farmer Mini-Grant Program, including Round 9 criteria and guidelines, and to access the online Grant application form, visit ‘Farmer Resources’ to find the ‘Mini-Grants‘ page at www.SMADC.com.

See the Round 9 Mini-Grant Criteria and Guidelines HERE

Access the online Mini-Grant Application Form HERE