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Grants to USA Agricultural Producers in Multiple States
for Research, Education, and Demonstration Projects

Farmer Rancher Grant Program

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NCR-SARE)

Deadline Date:

12/02/21 4:00 PM CST Receipt


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Grants of up to $15,000 and grants of up to $30,000 to USA ranchers and farmers in multiple states for research, education, and demonstration projects. Eligible applicants are located in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Grants support producers who are protecting natural resources, enhancing communities, and boosting profitability.

NCR-SARE’s Farmer Rancher Grant Program is a competitive grants program for farmers and ranchers who want to explore sustainable solutions to problems through on-farm research, demonstration, and education projects.

Farmer Rancher Grants provide opportunities for farmers/ranchers to use Sustainable Agriculture practices to solve problems on the farm or ranch, and to share their ideas, innovations, and results with others. The program values learning by doing and reporting on what worked, what didn’t, and what farmers/ranchers would recommend for others. Projects that involve whole-farm systems, a youth component, and/or historically underserved farmers/ranchers are encouraged.

Farmer Rancher grants have funded various topics, including pest/disease management, crop, and livestock production, food sovereignty, education/outreach, networking, quality of life issues, marketing, soil quality, energy, and more.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 163677

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

About 40 projects are funded each year.

Estimated Size of Grant:

There are two types of competitive grants:
1. Individual grants ($15,000 maximum)
2. Team grants for two or more farmers/ranchers from separate and distinct operations who are working together ($30,000 maximum).

Term of Contract:

Projects may last up to 23 months.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Any farmer/rancher or team of farmers/ranchers who farm or operate a ranch in the North Central region may apply. A farmer/rancher is someone who raises crops or livestock, especially as a business. Applicants may be just beginning the transition to a more sustainable operation or may already be using sustainable practices and want to implement additional changes. (Grants to applicants under 21 need to be signed by a parent or guardian.)

Team projects must have at least two farmer/rancher participants from separate and distinct operations.

Funds are not for everyday farming expenses, other than those directly related to the grant project. Grant funds cannot be used for planning, construction, repair, or remodeling of buildings, or to buy motorized vehicles. These items may be leased or rented with grant funds if they are needed for the project. Grant funds cannot be used for permanent installations (e.g., wells or buried irrigation lines).

Pre-Application Information:

2022 Grant Cycle and Payment Schedule:
- August 2021: Farmer/Rancher grant call for proposals released
- Proposals must be received online or in the NCR-SARE office by mail or e-mail by 4:00 p.m. CST on December 2, 2021.
- Spring, 2022: Grant recipients announced, project contract signed, first payment (50%) awarded. Typically, this is between April 1 and May 1 (depends in part on how quickly grantees return a signed contract).
- January 31, 2023: Progress report due. Second grant payment (35%) released once progress report and budget are approved.
- January 31, 2024: Project end date and Deadline for submitting final report. All funds should be spent and grant project completed by this date. Final payment (15%) released once final report is approved. Final payment is a reimbursement.

Grant recipients may participate in one Individual grant and one Team grant annually.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply Online:

If you are unable to use the online system e-mail or mail proposals to:
NCR-SARE Farmer Rancher Grant Program
120 Biosystems & Ag Eng Bldg, University of Minnesota
1390 Eckles Ave, St Paul MN 55108

Contact NCR-SARE for information on Farmer Rancher Grants and the SARE program:
Joan Benjamin
NCR-SARE Associate Regional Coordinator
Lincoln University
900 Leslie Blvd, Room 101
Jefferson City, MO 65101

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Missouri;   Nebraska;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   South Dakota;   Wisconsin

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