The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is looking to reward the people who are pushing sustainable agriculture.

Ag Department will award up to $50,000 for projects that demonstrate and publicize the energy efficiency, environmental benefit, or profitability of sustainable agricultural techniques or systems, from production through marketing.

The Agricultural Growth, Research, and Innovation Program’s Sustainable Agriculture Demonstration Grant program will accept applications through 4 p.m. Dec. 9, 2021.

Applicants may request up to $50,000 per project. The first $25,000 does not need to be matched by the applicants. For requests between $25,000 and $50,000, applicants must provide a dollar-for-dollar match on the amount above $25,000.

The department anticipates awarding up to $250,000 with the funding to be awarded in 2022. Projects must last two to three years and grantees must be willing to share what they learn with others.

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Projects are published annually in the department’s Greenbook, which provides a summary of each project along with results, management tips, locations of previous projects, and other resources.

Past grants have funded a wide range of projects, such as exploring farm diversification; cover crops and crop rotation; conservation tillage; input reduction strategies; and alternative energies such as wind, methane, and biomass.

Minnesota farmers, educational institutions, individuals at educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations are eligible to apply. Applicants must be Minnesota residents, and projects must take place on Minnesota farms.

Proposals are required to be submitted through the Ag Department's online application system.

For more information, visit the AGRI Sustainable Agriculture Demonstration Grant webpage.