Find Nonprofit and Small Business Grants

Advance Search

Only Available for Paid Subscribers
Clear Filters
Search Filters

Farmer Rancher Grant Program

Grants to USA Agricultural Producers in Multiple
States for Sustainable Farming and Livestock Projects

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

Add to My Calendar 

North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NCR-SARE)

Deadline Date:

12/03/20 4:00 PM CST Receipt


Request a Grant Writer

Grants to Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin ranchers and farmers to apply eco-friendly practices in addressing farm-related needs. Funding is intended to explore viable solutions for labor, marketing, production issues and other problems. Sustainable agriculture practices will be tested through on-farm research, education, or demonstration projects and results are shared with other farmers/ranchers. Projects that involve whole farm systems and/or a youth component are encouraged.

Farmer Rancher Grants provide opportunities for farmers/ranchers to use Sustainable Agriculture practices and their own innovative ideas to solve problems on the farm or ranch, and to share their ideas with others. There are three types of competitive grants:

  1. Individual grants.
  2. Team of Two grants for two farmers/ranchers from separate and distinct operations who are working together.
  3. Group grants for three or more farmers/ranchers from separate and distinct operations who are working together.

Sustainable Agriculture is farming and ranching that is ecologically sound, profitable, and socially responsible. Sustainable Agriculture practices may include but are not limited to:

  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
  • Rotational Grazing (e.g. Management-intensive Grazing and Mob Grazing)
  • Soil Erosion Control
  • Soil Quality Improvement
  • Water Quality Improvement/Wetlands
  • Cover Crops
  • Crop/Landscape Diversity
  • Nutrient Management
  • Agroforestry
  • Value-Added and Direct Marketing
  • Wildlife Preservation
  • Beneficial Insects
  • Poultry and Small-Scale Livestock Production
  • Holistic/Systems Approaches to Farming and Ranching
  • Organic Agriculture
  • Proactive Weed Control (e.g. Interseeded cover crops, use of crop rotation, planting row crops in warm soils)

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 163677

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

About 50 projects are funded each year.

Estimated Size of Grant:

- Individual grants: $9,000 maximum
- Team of Two grants for two farmers/ranchers from separate and distinct operations who are working together: $18,000 maximum
- Group grants for three or more farmers/ranchers from separate and distinct operations who are working together: $27,000 maximum

Term of Contract:

Grant recipients have 23 months to complete their projects.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Any farmer/rancher or team or group of farmers/ranchers who farm or operate a ranch in the North Central region may apply. A farmer/rancher is someone who raises crops or livestock, especially as a business.

Applicants may be just beginning the transition to a more sustainable operation or may already be using sustainable practices and want to implement additional changes.

Grants to applicants under 21 need to be signed by a parent or guardian.

Team of Two projects must have two farmer/ rancher participants from separate and distinct operations. Group projects must have at least three farmer/rancher participants from separate and distinct operations. If your situation is unique, please explain or contact NCR-SARE to discuss your options. Teams and Groups must designate a farmer/rancher project coordinator who will submit and sign the proposal, be responsible for reporting, and assume tax liability associated with the grant, if there is any. Talk with a tax consultant if you have questions.

Grant recipients may participate in one Individual grant and one Team or Group grant annually. Previous farmer/rancher grant recipients are eligible to apply if reports from previous grant projects are up to date. Proposals from previous grant recipients will be evaluated on a competitive basis with all other proposals.

Farmer/Rancher Grants are for innovative sustainable agriculture research or demonstration /education projects; they are not for everyday farming expenses, other than those directly related to the grant project. For example, purchasing fencing or livestock to expand your herd would not be allowed. Fencing or livestock needed as part of a research project to explore how different cover crops work in rotational grazing would be allowed, but only for the land and animals involved in the research.

Grant funds cannot be used for planning, construction, repair, or remodeling of buildings, or to buy motorized vehicles. These items may be leased or rented with grant funds, if they are needed for the project. Grant funds cannot be used for permanent installations (e.g. wells or buried irrigation lines).

Pre-Application Information:

The online submission system will open in August 2020. Proposals must be received online or in the NCR-SARE office by mail or e-mail by 4:00 PM CST on December 3, 2020.

Farmer Rancher 2021 Grant Cycle:
- August, 2020: Farmer/Rancher grant call for proposals released
- December 3, 2020: Farmer/Rancher grant proposals due
- Spring, 2021: Administrative Council recommends Farmer/Rancher grant recipients. Budgets are reviewed by University accountants for compliance with USDA guidelines and grant contracts are sent out. Approximate date of first payment of grant funds (50%) is between April 1 and May 1 (depends in part on how quickly grantees return a signed contract).
- January 31, 2022: Progress report due. Grant recipients are eligible for a second grant payment (35%) once their progress report and budget is approved.
- January 31, 2023: Project end date and Deadline for submitting final report. All funds should be spent and grant project completed by this date. Grant recipients are eligible for a final payment (15%) once their final report is approved. Final payment is a reimbursement.


Grant Program Presentations:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

If you are unable to use the online system, email

Or mail proposals to:
NCR-SARE Farmer Rancher Grant Program
120 Biosystems & Ag Eng Bldg
University of Minnesota
1390 Eckles Ave
St Paul MN 55108

Joan Benjamin
Farmer Rancher Grant Program Coordinator
and Associate Regional Coordinator
Lincoln University in Missouri
Lorenzo J. Greene Hall
900 Leslie Blvd, Room 101
Jefferson City, MO 65101
Phone: 573-681-5545

Grant Coverage Areas:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Missouri;   Nebraska;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   South Dakota;   Wisconsin

Suggested Grants:

Grants to USA State Agencies to Develop Volunteer Programs in Local Communities

Deadline 06/23/21

Grants to USA state agencies to develop and support volunteer programs in local communities. Applicants are advised that required registrations may take up to several weeks to complete. Funding is intended for programs that support, manage, and engage volunteers. Priori

GrantWatch ID#: 123648

Grants to USA Nonprofits to Address the Climate Crisis and Reduce Inequality

Deadline Ongoing

Grants to USA nonprofit organizations to reduce social inequality and promote solutions to the climate crisis. Eligible programs will address the areas of racial and economic justice, corporate and political accountability; voice, creativity, and culture; and an inclusi

GrantWatch ID#: 123756

Grants to Researchers Affiliated with USA Qualified Institutions to Improve Clinical Researc...

Deadline 08/27/21 LOI Date: 07/09/21

Grants of up to $50,000 to researchers affiliated with USA qualified institutions to advance research in the field of pediatric oncology. Applicants must submit a letter of intent prior to submitting a full application. Funding is intended to increase the institution's

GrantWatch ID#: 125838

Grants to USA and Canada Nonprofit Charitable Organizations to Impact Public Policy in a Var...

Deadline Ongoing

Grants to USA and Canada nonprofit charitable organizations to impact public policy in a variety of national and international issues. In previous years, grants have been awarded for general operations and project support to think tanks, national councils, judicial orga

GrantWatch ID#: 125864

Grants to USA Nonprofits to Protect Natural Resources

Deadline Ongoing

Grants to USA nonprofit organizations to protect natural resources on land and water in locations around the world. Funding is intended to ensure that activities to acquire metals, gemstones, and corals for design use do not have an adverse impact on the area of origin.

GrantWatch ID#: 126162

Grants to USA, Canada, and International Independent Filmmakers for Feature-Length Films

Deadline 07/26/21

Grants of up to $25,000 and grants of up to $50,000 to USA, Canada, and International independent filmmakers for feature-length film projects. Funding is intended to support projects at any production phase from development through post-production. Priority will be give

GrantWatch ID#: 127055

Grants to USA and Canada Nonprofits for Projects to Protect Wildlife and Natural Habitats

Deadline 10/01/21

Grants of up to $3,000 to USA and Canada nonprofit organizations for projects to protect wildlife and natural habitats. Funding is intended for campaigns to save specific species and ecosystems. Eligible activities include public policy work, litigation, advocacy, and d

GrantWatch ID#: 129644

Grants to USA Individuals and Non-Federal Agencies for Conservation Initiatives in Agricultu...

Deadline 07/19/21

Grants to USA and territories individuals and non-federal agencies to promote the adoption and development of innovative approaches to conservation in agriculture. Applicants are advised that required registrations may take several weeks to complete. Priority funding ar

GrantWatch ID#: 129980

Grants to USA Nonprofits in Multiple States for Economic Development and Job Training in Eli...

Deadline Ongoing

Grants to USA nonprofit organizations in multiple states to address the needs of residents in eligible counties, with priority given to low- to moderate-income populations. Applicants in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska,

GrantWatch ID#: 130602

Grants to USA and Canada Low-Income Individuals and Families for Financial Assistance

Deadline Ongoing

Grants to USA and Canada individuals and families with low-income for financial assistance. Types of assistance include financial support to offset emergency expenses or to cover the cost of regular monthly bills. Funding is intended for workers and households that are

GrantWatch ID#: 131400