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Grants to Minnesota Farmers, Nonprofits, and Educational Institutions to Advance Agricultural Research and Resources


Geographic Focus

USA: Minnesota

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AGRI Sustainable Agriculture Demonstration Grant (SADG) Program

Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA)

Agency: State

GrantWatch ID #137510

Grant Description

Grants to Minnesota farmers, nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and individuals at educational institutions for projects to advance agricultural research and resources throughout the state. Funding is intended to support innovative projects that increase profitability, benefit the environment, and maximize the energy efficiency of sustainable agricultural practices and systems from production through marketing.

This program is designed to demonstrate and publicize the energy efficiency, environmental benefit, or profitability of sustainable agriculture techniques or systems from production through marketing. Grants fund research or demonstrations on Minnesota farms that explore sustainable agriculture practices and systems that could make farming more profitable, resource efficient, and personally satisfying. Findings are published in the MDA’s annual Greenbook.

Project examples include but are not limited to:

  • Increased environmental sustainability and improved soil health
  • Conservation tillage and weed management
  • Novel cover crops and crop rotations
  • Nutrient and pesticide management, including runoff protection
  • Farm-based energy efficiency or production such as wind, methane, or biomass
  • Integrated pest management systems for insects, weeds, and diseases
  • Seed breeding and/or conservation
  • Livestock production systems or management strategies
  • Developing/refining/improving marketing opportunities, including season extension and post-harvest storage and handling
  • Novel enterprise diversification, including organic production, using traditional and non-traditional crops and livestock
  • Other creative ideas that address farm input reduction or management, conservation, energy, and/or profitability

Reviewers are looking for interesting ideas that may or may not work. Ideas do not have to be brand new but should be new to Minnesota or the part of the state where they’re being proposed.


Eligible Expenses:

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  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicants must:

- Be a Minnesota farmer, educational institution, individual at an educational institution, or a nonprofit organization.
-- For this program, a farmer is someone who cultivates, operates, or manages a farm for profit, and who grows or raises at least $1,000 of agricultural products for sale annually.
-- Other government entities such as municipalities and counties are not eligible.

- Be in good standing with the State of Minnesota.
-- Owe no back taxes.
-- Have no defaults on Minnesota State-backed financing for the last seven years.
-- Have acceptable performance on past MDA grants.
-- Be compliant with current state regulations.

If applying as an individual versus an organization, you must not have been convicted of a state or federal criminal offense which includes theft, embezzlement of public funds, and forgery.

For details on collaborations, see

MDA employees and their spouses are not eligible to receive grants from this program.

Ineligible Expenses:

Pre-Application Information:

Timeline and Deadlines:
- December 1, 2022, 4:00 p.m. CT: Last time to submit questions on the grant program
- December 8, 2022, 4:00 p.m. CT: Applications due
- January 27, 2023: Notification of decisions; start grant agreement negotiations
- March 2023: Anticipated project start date (after the grant contract is fully signed)

For requests between $25,000 and $50,000, applicants must provide a dollar-for-dollar cash match on the amount above $25,000.

In this round of funding, applicants may only receive one SustAg grant.

Questions and Answers:


Additional Funding Information:

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

Approximately 8 to 15 grants.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Applicants may request up to $50,000 per project.

Term of Contract:

Projects must last at least two years but no more than three.

Contact Information:

Apply online:

Questions must be submitted by email to with "AGRI SustAg Grant" in the subject line.

Kelly Anderson
Ag Marketing & Development

Eric Nooker
Ag Marketing & Development

Grants Line
Ag Marketing & Development

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