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Apply for a working lands grants

MONTPELIER — The Working Lands Enterprise Board (WLEB) is seeking applications for funding of projects that will allow a Vermont farm, food or forest business to invest in and scale-up their business.

The Pre-Application for Supply Chain and Market Level Infrastructure Grants opened for reading and reviewing on Oct. 8. Submittals to this Pre-Application open on Oct. 22 and are due on Dec. 6. These Pre-Applications will be reviewed by the WLEB in December, and applicants will be notified in January of denial or invitation to submit Full Applications.

Supply Chain project activities under these grants will demonstrate how the market or product the applicant is developing or expanding, will positively impact multiple businesses within its own supply chain, for projects ranging from $25,000 to $75,000.

Market Level Infrastructure project activities under these grants will illustrate how the market or product the applicant is developing or expanding will positively impact multiple businesses and/or create a new market. Only low-grade wood, forest products and/or value-added agriculture product sectors are eligible, for projects ranging from $75,000 to $250,000.

The Working Lands Enterprise Board is also currently accepting applications for other grant opportunities, to help Vermont businesses with everything from infrastructure, marketing, meat processing, professional development projects and more.

The following are the funding opportunities currently open:

• Standard Business Grants for projects; $10,000 – $25,000.

• Meat Slaughter and Processing Grants for projects; $50,000 – $100,000.

• Producer Association Grants for projects; $10,000 – $20,000.

Applications for the above three grants are due by 11:59 p.m., on Nov. 1.

Applications will be reviewed in December of 2021 by the Working Lands Enterprise Board. Project decisions will be communicated in late January 2022. For more information visit workinglands.vermont.gov.

The Working Lands Enterprise Initiative (WLEI) and governing board (WLEB) were created by the legislature in 2012 to stimulate economic development in the agricultural and forestry sectors. WLEI is a collaborative effort between the Agency of Agriculture, Food, and Markets, Department of Forest, Parks, and Recreation, and the Agency of Commerce and Community Development.

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