The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, Division of Agriculture is accepting grant applications for the Local Agriculture and Seafood Act Grants Program. The goal of the program, which was established by the Local Agriculture and Seafood Act (LASA) of 2012, is to support the growth, development, and marketing of local food and seafood in Rhode Island. It is made possible by $100,000 in funding from the State of Rhode Island, and an additional $130,000 in matching funds from the Henry P. Kendall Foundation, the van Beuren Charitable Foundation, and the Rhode Island Foundation. This unique and unprecedented public-private partnership will provide grants intended to directly benefit and strengthen the local food system in Rhode Island.
Priorities for the 2016 LASA Grants Program are:
Please note that the online application is strongly preferred; it must, however, be completed in one sitting. We recommend that you look at the questions and prepare your short answer responses and any additional documents for attachments ahead of time, before you begin to fill out the application form for submission. If you prepare answers in a word processing program such as Word, you should be able to copy and paste your answers into the online form.If you are unable to submit the online application or prefer to deliver a hard copy by mail or by hand, there is a printable version available here.
Please see the LASA Grant Guidelines and Instructions for additional information.
The RIDEM/Division of Agriculture is pleased to announce the availability of Farm Viability grant funds for the purpose of enhancing the Competitiveness of Specialty Crops grown in Rhode Island.
Specialty crops are defined by this federally supported program as fruits and vegetables, dried fruit, tree nuts, and nursery crops including floriculture such as Christmas Trees, cut flowers, honey, hops, and turf grass production. Examples of enhancing the market competitiveness of specialty crops include, but are not limited to: Research, promotion, marketing, nutrition, trade enhancement, food safety, food security, plant health programs, education, "buy local" programs, increased consumption, increased innovation, improved efficiency and reduced costs of distribution systems, environmental concerns and conservation, product development, and developing cooperatives.
Grant applications and projects must further the competitiveness of specialty crops only as broadly as possible in Rhode Island, and not just serve to enhance individual farm viability pursuant to USDA program guidelines. Grant funds will not be awarded for Projects that solely benefit a particular commercial product or provide a profit to a single organization, institution, or individual. Single organizations, institutions, and individuals are encouraged to participate as project partners. Please click here for an overview of the program and some examples of grant requests.
The DEM Agricultural Advisory Committee who will make recommendations to DEM will review applications. Applications, accompanied by a W9 form, must be postmarked no later than March 31, 2016 and sent to DEM's Division of Agriculture, 235 Promenade Street, Room 370, Providence, RI 02908 to be considered. Grant-related questions should be directed to Peter Susi, Deputy Chief DEM/Division of Agriculture (or by telephone at 401.222-2781, ext. 4517).