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​Farm Vitality Planning Grant

A Pennsylvania Farm Bill Program

The Farm Vitality Planning Grant Program will help fund professional services for those planning for the future of a farm. The program will enhance the long-term vitality of Pennsylvania's farms through sound business planning, efficient transitions of farm ownership, strategic farm expansion, diversification of agricultural production, and building a team of financial and technical expertise as a resource for Pennsylvania's farmers.

Uses

Grants may be used for expenses related to the following projects:

  • Creating or obtaining business plans or management strategies to enhance the long-term economic viability of a farm.
  • Creating or obtaining plans for the transition of ownership and operation of a farm to new owners and operators.
  • Creating or obtaining plans for transfer of ownership and operation of a farm within the farmer's family.
  • Creating or obtaining business plans to diversify an existing agricultural operation to new or different forms of agricultural production.
  • Creating or obtaining business plans for a farm expansion or to seek financing for farm growth.
  • Creating or obtaining plans to maintain the long-term economic viability and protect the investment of public funds in preserving farms that are subject to perpetual agricultural conservation easements acquired under the Agricultural Area Security Law, for agricultural production

Eligibility

  • Farmers,
  • Prospective farmers,
  • and others in support of the grant's objectives. 

Funding

This is a reimbursement grant. The maximum grant amount is $7,500 and is limited to 75% of project costs.

The amount of reimbursement is based on actual eligible costs submitted by an approved applicant for an approved project during the fiscal year in which the grant is offered.

Grants will be awarded on a funds-available basis.

The Department of Agriculture will provide up to $1,000,000 for program grants in the 2019 – 2020 Fiscal Year.  

Expenses incurred for the completion of the project since July 1, 2019 and up to two years after the effective date of the grant agreement are eligible for reimbursement. 

Expenses incurred since July 1, 2019 but prior to signing a grant agreement must be described in the work plan when applying in order to request reimbursement for those expenses.

In-kind support will not be counted toward an applicant's matching contribution. 

Grant money may not be used to reimburse any portion of the project costs which are being paid or reimbursed under another federal or state grant program. 

Applications are for one, single project. Separate projects require separate applications.

Applications are online only, through Pennsylvania's Single Application for Assistance online application system, at:  www.esa.dced.state.pa.us

Application Period

Applications must be submitted through the Single Application for Assistance online system now through April 3, 2020 at 4:59 p.m.

Applications received outside of that window, or after funding is exhausted, will not be considered.

The Department will review completed grant applications in the order received and will award grants on a first-come, first-served basis for complete applications for eligible projects until funds are no longer available.