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Grants & Funding Opportunities

The Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development administers various grants, including the federal Specialty Crop Block Grant and the state-funded Value-Added Grant and Rural Development Fund Grants. The purpose of the grants is to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops, promote expansion of value-added agriculture production within the state, and support infrastructure in rural communities.

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Agriculture Preservation Fund Grants
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development offers this grant opportunity to local farmland preservation programs, at the county or township level. This program will assist communities to preserve agricultural lands by providing funding for permanent conservation easements.

Animal Welfare Fund Grants
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development offers this grant opportunity to animal shelters for programs that increase sterilization rates among dogs and cats prior to adoption, provide anti-cruelty training for animal law enforcement agencies, offer proper animal care programs, and assist shelters with the unreimbursed costs of care for animals involved in law violations.

County Fairs Capital Improvement Grants
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development offers this grant opportunity to county fairs. This program will assist in the promotion of building improvements or other capital improvements on county fairgrounds within the state.

Farm Innovation Grants
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development offers the Farm Innovation Program to in-state educational and research centers to develop and support innovative solutions to real, immediate, and future farm problems facing Michigan’s food and agricultural industry.

Farm Stress Grants
The MDARD Agriculture Development Division offers a grant opportunity to existing Michigan farm stress programming to expand or sustain stress assistance programs for individuals who are engaged in farming, ranching, and other agriculture-related occupation.

Fertilizer Research Grants
This grant opportunity promotes the knowledge of fertilizer use and environmental protection. The grants are used to address fertilizer rate recommendations, application and fate of fertilizer to maximize issues around crop production and quality as well as protecting the natural environment.

Food and Agriculture Investment Fund Grants
The Food and Agriculture Investment Program provides financial support for food and agriculture projects that help expand food and agriculture processing to enable growth in the industry and Michigan's economy.

Food Safety Education Fund Grants
The Food Safety Education grant program provides training and education to consumers on food safety; and training and education to food service establishment employees and agents of the director who enforce Michigan's food regulations.

Livestock and Commodity Exposition Competitive Grants
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development offers this grant opportunity to associations or other organized events hosting fairs or expositions showing livestock and commodities.

Michigan Craft Beverage Council Research Grants
The Craft Beverage Council was established within MDARD to provide for research into Michigan agricultural products, such as fruits, hops and barley, that are used in the production of Michigan wine, cider, beer, spirits and mixed spirit drinks.

Rural Development Fund Grants
The MDARD Agriculture Development Division provides grant opportunities to promote the sustainability of land-based industries and support infrastructure that benefits rural communities.

Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety Block Grant
The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is seeking applications for the Seafood Processors Pandemic Response and Safety Block Grant program to support the seafood processing sector. Funded through the United States Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service, this program provides relief and assistance to eligible seafood processing facilities and processing vessels in response to the ongoing impacts from COVID-19. The grants will provide cost reimbursement for eligible expenditures that occurred between January 27, 2020, and December 31, 2021.

Specialty Crop Block Grants
The MDARD Agriculture Development Division facilitates the grant funds to projects to enhance the competitiveness of Michigan specialty crops, which include fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops (including floriculture).

Value-Added and Regional Food Systems Grants
The MDARD Agriculture Development Division administers these grants to establish, retain, expand, attract or develop value added agricultural processing in Michigan, or that expand or develop regional food systems or access the healthy food.