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28 Mar 2022

Open Federal Funding Opportunities Round-Up

From the hard working folks at the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, the following is a list of the currently available federal funding opportunities.

These opportunities have rapidly approaching deadlines: 


Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) - for a variety of private and public organizations


  • Description: 

    • OREI is a competitive research grant program administered by the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). The purpose of OREI is to fund integrated projects to enhance the ability of producers and processors who have already adopted organic standards to grow and market high quality organic products and to help mitigate the impacts of climate change. Priority concerns include biological, physical, and social sciences, including economics. A variety of private and public organizations are eligible to apply and all applicants are encouraged to consult with organic producers. OREI has had a significant, positive impact on the profitability and productivity of organic farms of all kinds across the country.

  • Deadline: Applications can be accessed here or here to be submitted by March 31, 2022

  • Eligibility: Find detailed program and eligibility information here.

  • Read more:



Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program (MPPEP) - for processors


  • Description:

    • Authorized by the American Rescue Plan Act, MPPEP  provides grants to help eligible processors expand their capacity, to encourage competition and sustainable growth in the meat processing sector, and to help improve supply chain resiliency. Grant funds may be used to build or update processing facilities, develop or utilize equipment and technology, ensure compliance, and offset operating costs. There is no minimum award amount. We expect the announcement of a second round of grants targeted towards small and very small processors soon.

  • Deadline: Applications must be submitted via www.grants.gov byApril 11, 2022

  • Eligibility: Sole proprietor businesses that engage in meat and poultry processing. Find more information on application requirements here.

  • Read more:

USDA Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities - a wide range of entities are eligible!

  •  Description: 

  • Deadline and eligibility:

    • Funding will be provided in two pools: 

      • Large-scale proposals from $5 million - $100 million are due April 8, 2022 

      • Proposal from $250,000 - $5 million are due May 27, 2022

    • Click here for detailed information on eligibility

  • Click here for the application and grant opportunity description. 

  • Read more: 

Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP)for organizations to support farmers


These opportunities opened within the last two weeks: 



  • Organic Transitions Program (ORG) - for colleges and universities  

    • Description: 

      • To support the development and implementation of research, extension, and higher education programs to improve the competitiveness of organic livestock and crop producers as well as those who are adopting organic practices. ORG will prioritize environmental services provided by organic farming systems in soil conservation, pollinator health, and climate change mitigation as well as the development of educational tools for agricultural professionals and the development of cultural practices and other allowable alternatives to substances recommended for removal from the National Organic Program’s National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances.

    • Apply: This deadline is April 21, 2022. The opportunity is currently posted at grants.gov and can be accessed directly using the following link: 2022 ORG or National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Organic Transitions Funding Opportunity. You can add the due date to your calendar at ORG Due Date

    • More




  • 2501 Program aka Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Rancherscommunity-based and nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, and tribal entities

    • Description: 

      • Approximately $35 million in funding is now available to community-based and nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, and tribal entities that help historically underserved and veteran farmers and ranchers own and operate successful farms. The 2501 Program is administered by the USDA Office of Partnerships & Public Engagement (OPPE) and helps to ensure that historically underserved producers have equitable access to the information, programs, and opportunities that will help them to find success in agriculture. Organizations can apply for a maximum amount of $250,000 for a single year, with a grant maximum amount of $750,000 over a 3-year period and grants will be offered to three categories of applicants: minority serving academic institutions; non-profit, community-based organizations, and tribal governments; and academic institutions. 

    • Apply: Applications must be submitted via grants.gov by the deadline of June 8, 2022 

    • More:


  • Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP) - for networks and partnerships of public and private entities 

    • Description:  

      • BFRDP is a competitive grant program that funds education, extension, outreach, and technical assistance initiatives directed at helping beginning farmers and ranchers of all types.The program is targeted especially to collaborative local, state, and regional networks and partnerships. It supports financial and entrepreneurial training, mentoring, and apprenticeship programs; “land link” programs that connect retiring farmers and landowners with new farmers; vocational training and agricultural rehabilitation programs for veterans; and education, outreach, and curriculum development activities to assist beginning farmers and ranchers. Grants have a term of 3 years and cannot exceed award amounts of $200,000 per year. For single year grants that are less than $50,000, USDA offers a simplified application process.

    • Apply: Apply here by May 19, 2022

    • More: 


  • UPDATE! USDA to Extend Application Deadlines for Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities Funding Opportunityfull opportunity description below 

    • The USDA is extending the deadlines to apply for the Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities funding opportunity after requests from many stakeholders. They have announced a meet and greet webinar series for prospective applicants intended as a space for folks who are applying to find partners for needs like measurement and verification or for bolstering the equity aspects of their applications. The deadline to register for these webinars is March 28th and the USDA expects them to fill up – don’t miss this cool opportunity!  To learn more and register click here. 


  • REMINDER: Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) renewals due April 15th! 

    •  NRCS should have notified participants with active FY 2018 contracts of the opportunity to apply for renewal consideration by March 18, 2022. The 2023 CSP Renewal signup includes applications based on the following existing contracts:

      • 2018-1 General

      • 2018-1 Renewal

      • 2018-1 RCPP-CSP

    • Participants applying for renewal must submit all needed documents covering their entire operation to NRCS by April 15, 2022. For assistance, please contact your state NRCS office.

    • Want to read more on CSP? Check out NSAC’s Guide to CSP and an NSAC blog post!

LAMP Subprograms

 The Value-Added Producer Grant Program (VAPG), the Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program (FMLFPP), and the Regional Food System Partnerships (RFSP) all have open funding opportunities outlined here. USDA AMS just released a new LAMP Stakeholder Toolkit to help organizations communicate these funding opportunities, including shareable graphics, sample email and social media outreach, and program information displayed in an easily digestible format.


Value-Added Producer Grant Program (VAPG) - for producers, organizations representing producers, cooperatives



Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program (FMLFPP) - many eligible entities!




Regional Food System Partnerships Program (RFSP)for partnerships between entities

  • Description:

    • RFSP supports public-private partnerships focusing on increasing the availability of locally and regionally produced agricultural products and alleviating administrative and technical barriers. The goal of RFSP is to encourage landscape-level approaches to planning and developing regional food economies through the formation of multi-stakeholder partnerships supporting on-the-ground projects. Projects can cover the planning, design, implementation, or expansion of local and regional food economies.

  • Deadline: Applications must be submitted through www.grants.gov by May 16, 2022

  • Eligibility: Find detailed program and eligibility information here and here.

  • Read more:


Pandemic Assistance Programs

DEADLINE EXTENDED: Local Food Purchasing Cooperative Agreement Program for State, Tribal, and Territorial Governments

  • Description: 

    • USDA Agricultural Marketing Service is dedicating up to $400M for cooperative agreements with states, tribal and territorial governments for the purchase of local food to be distributed to high need communities to maintain and improve food and agricultural supply chain resiliency. There is a priority for purchasing from socially disadvantaged farmers and producers. Each state has been allocated a share of the $400M based on a formula that includes the state’s poverty and unemployment rates. AMS will initially only allocate 60% of each state’s total funding to ensure that there are sufficient funds reserved for tribal communities in the state.

  • Deadline:  EXTENDED TO MAY 6, 2022

  • Eligibility:  The funding is initially available only to State, Tribal and Territorial Governments but these agencies may partner with NGOs for the purchase and distribution of food.

  • More: 

USDA Dairy Donation Programfor partnerships between dairy organizations and non-profit organizations