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Wednesday, 08 October 2014 15:36

Grants to help farmers branch out

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out farmgrantsWestern North Carolina farmers can apply for farm diversification grants over the next two years totaling $340,000.

 

WNC AgOptions awards farmers grants of $3,000 and $6,000 to offset the risk of trying a new venture. 

The grant funding is through the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. The Commission has helped the mountain region cope with changes in the agriculture industry, ensuring that farmers continue farming.

“Farmers in Western North Carolina have proven time and time again that they are very innovative, resourceful and creative in how they produce and market their products,” said Bill Teague of Waynesville, chairman of the N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. “Our board is committed to the success of farmers in the targeted counties, and we know these grants will encourage many successful projects.”

The upcoming application deadline is Nov. 21, with another round next fall. All applicants should contact their Cooperative Extension agents by Oct. 24 to set up an appointment to discuss their projects. www.wncagoptions.org.

Since 2004, WNC AgOptions has distributed nearly $1.8 million to farmers in WNC, from goat cheese operations to community-supported agriculture.

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