Lavender farming grants include a variety of funding opportunities, which range from research and education grants to rural housing preservation grants. Creative grant applications can produce a quilt of funding for lavender farms, which can aid not only in the marketing and production of crops but also help fund other beneficial projects such as renewable energy on site.
The Sustainable Agricultural Research and Education Program
The Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Program is run by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and offers grants to farmers for a wide range of projects. Grant projects funded by SARE benefit farmers in areas such as pest and weed control, marketing, on-farm renewable energy and conservation tillage. Grants can be searched by state or grant title online. Funding issues can halt certain programs, so visit the website to check for availability of funds for these programs.
SARE Producer Grants
SARE Producer Grants give funding to farmers who offer outreach such as field trips and informational brochures. SARE Professional and Producer Grants allow an agricultural professional to work with the farmer, and SARE On-Farm Research Grants fund nonprofit professionals who help farmers find sustainable solutions to their problems. Visit the Peaceful Acres Lavender Farm website to read about the SARE Research Grant they received. Their grant allowed them to grow an additional acre of lavender in the hopes of improving growing conditions for oil-producing lavender varieties with a goal of future oil production in Ohio.
The Micro Eco-Farming Movement and Rural Development Grants
The Center for the Micro Eco-Farming Movement's website is a wealth of resources for farmers. This site provides farming grant resources and marketing tools, as well as detailed instructions to guide farmers through the business plan and grant writing process. This site recommends farmers visit the National Sustainable Agricultural Information Center regularly for farmer grant announcements and the USDA's Rural Development Program, which helps farmers with grants for housing, such as grants for rural housing repairs and preservation as well as farm labor housing. They also offer farm business development grants such as the Small Socially-Disadvantaged Producer Grant and Value-Added Producer Grant.
The Small Business Administration Grants and Frontier Producer Partnership Grants
The Small Business Administration (SBA) offers small business grants for agriculture businesses. The Farmers' Market Promotion Program gives grants to agricultural cooperatives, producer networks and producer associations to "help improve and expand domestic farmers’ markets, roadside stands, community-supported agriculture programs, agri-tourism activities and other direct producer-to-consumer market opportunities." The SBA website also has instructions about how to sell farm products to the USDA. An innovative grant project from Frontier Natural Products Co-op could serve as a blueprint for others. Frontier gave a grant to a farmer to produce an herb specifically for its company and it has created a partnership program between the seller and producer with this business model.
Kirsten Anderberg has been a published writer since 1999. Her work has appeared in magazines, newspapers, websites and books including "Utne," "HipMama," "ZNet" and "Adbusters." Anderberg received her Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of Washington and her master's degree in history from California State University.