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Agricultural Funding Resources by Topic

Local governments, community organizations, and individuals can apply for agricultural funding and technical assistance from government organizations and/or private sources. This page highlights program offices, toolkits, and guides to help you identify programs that support new farmers, animal welfare and alternatives, renewable energy projects, rural development, organic or sustainable agriculture, work that enhances agricultural water usage, and other USDA priorities. Review any funding opportunities and/or programs carefully as eligibility, application deadlines, and qualified expenditures will vary.

Funding Resources by Topic

External links relevant to agricultural funding
Animal Welfare and Animal Use Alternatives

Find 3Rs (animal use alternatives) Funding Opportunities [] compiled by the NAL, Animal Welfare Information Center.


Aquaculture Funding Opportunities and Grants [] provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in consultation with the Subcommittee on Aquaculture (SCA).

Special Research Grants Program Aquaculture Research [] through the USDA, National Institute for Food and Agriculture.

Food Safety

Find Funding Opportunity Announcements for food safety research, compiled by NAL Food Safety Research Information Office (FSRIO). [See drop down box on left.]

Invasive Species

See Grants and Funding for Invasive Species Management [] compiled by the NAL, National Invasive Species Information Center.

Renewables and Energy-Efficient Integration

USDA's Rural Development Energy Programs [] offer funding for energy audits and development assistance, energy-systems conversion, solar installation, and more.

Department of Energy (DOE) supports energy projects [] through grants, loans, and financing programs.

Search the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency [] provided by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at North Carolina State University.

Rural Development

Help for Rural Communities [] provides listings of funding and technical assistance programs for community improvement and information on assistance for individuals and families.

USDA Rural Development (RD) offers loans, grants, and loan guarantees [] to support economic development, emergency services and first responders, utilities/telecommunication, as well as water and conservation projects.

Find a list of Funding Sources for Downtown Revitalization [] and economic development efforts compiled by the NAL, Rural Information Center.

Consult the Guide to Funding Resources [] for assistance in identifying funding opportunities and preparing successful proposals when applying for an eligible federal grant or cooperative agreement.

Find Fire Service Grants and Funding [] for expenses such as the equipment, apparatus, training and salaries necessary to protect and serve communities.

Specialty, Organic, or Alternative-Type Crop or Livestock

Financial Resources for Farmers and Ranchers 

"USDA offers numerous programs to help farmers, ranchers, and businesses access the organic market. This page explains USDA's top resources supporting organic agriculture."


Grants and Opportunities

USDA. Agricultural Marketing Service.

The Agricultural Marketing Service provides funding opportunities for U.S. growers and producers while also working with organizations supporting rural America and the Nation’s agricultural sector. Grants include opportunities for specialty crops, seafood, dairy, meat and poultry, sheep, local and regional foods, and more.


How does USDA support Organic Farms and Businesses?

USDA. Agricultural Marketing Service.


Biomass Crop Assistance Program

USDA. Farm Service Agency

"The Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) provides financial assistance to owners and operators of agricultural and non-industrial private forest land who wish to establish, produce, and deliver biomass feedstocks." 


Grass Roots Guide to Federal Farm and Food Programs

National Sustainable Agriculture Coalitions. (NSAC)

The guide "provides an in-depth look at dozens of federal programs and policies most important to sustainable agriculture, and details how they can be accessed by farmers, ranchers, and grassroots organizations nationwide."


Growing Opportunity:  A Guide to USDA Sustainable Farming Programs.

USDA, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition.  2022


Building Sustainable Farms, Ranches and Communities

A Guide to Federal Programs for Sustainable Agriculture, Forestry, Entrepreneurship, Conservation, Food Systems and Community Development.

Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education.

Find resources and information on farm funding in AskUSDA's Knowledge Article: How do I fund or start a small sustainable organic or alternative type farm?

Sustainable Agriculture, Forestry, Conservation, Food Systems and Community Development

NRCS offers four programs:

Agricultural Conservation Easement Program, ACEP [] provides funding to protect agricultural viability through efforts that limit nonagricultural usage and restore, protect and/or enhance both grazing lands and eligible wetlands.

Environmental Quality Incentives Program, EQIP [] assists farm managers, ranchers, and forest landowners integrate conservation practices into their working lands.

Conservation Stewardship Program, CSP [] contract participants receive payments to maintain the existing level of conservation (as defined in their contract) or to integrate new conservation practices.

Regional Conservation Partnership Program, RCPP [] leverages public-private relationships to implement NRCS contracts and conservations efforts between producers and project partners.

Download a document produced by the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program titled Building Sustainable Farms, Ranches and Communities, A Guide to Federal Programs for Sustainable Agriculture, Forestry, Entrepreneurship, Conservation, Food Systems and Community Development [; PDF, 1.3 MB]

Urban Agriculture

View links to USDA funding programs for urban agriculture [] compiled by the NAL, Alternative Farming Systems Information Center (AFSIC).

Water and Agriculture

USDA. Farm Service Agency


USDA. National Institute of Food and Agriculture


USDA. Natural Resources Conservation Service


USDA. Rural Development


DOC. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration


U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI)

DOI. Fish and Wildlife Service


U.S. Environmental Protection Agency


Additional Resources

Assistance Listings

General Services Administration.

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Grants

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

Active Funding Opportunities

National Science Foundation.

Building Sustainable Farms, Ranches and Communities

Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education.

Environmental Finance Center

University of Maryland. School of Architecture, Preservation and Planning.


Water Research Foundation

A Guide to Funding Resources

The Guide identifies and links to searchable databases that offer funding opportunities from government and/or private sources that are available to local governments, community organizations, and individuals. 

The Guide also links to full-text, online guides and tips to assist grant writers prepare successful proposals.

How does USDA support organic farms & businesses?

USDA helps farmers with organic certification guidance, biodiversity and natural resources conservation, financial and production assistance and marketing.

How to Contact Your State or Local Government

US Map

Many states and local governments also offer funding programs. Access each state’s department of agriculture at the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture’s (NASDA) state directory.

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