Southern SARE: Producer Grant

Southern Sustainable Agriculture, Research & Education (SARE)

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Grant amount: Up to US $20,000

Deadline: Nov 15, 2020 2:00pm PST

Applicant type: Working Professional

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Research

Location of project: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia (US state), Kentucky Show all

Location of residency: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia (US state), Kentucky Show all

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About this funder:



The Southern Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SSARE) Program recognizes the value and importance of on-the-farm, producer experience in developing solutions to agricultural production challenges.  In order to capture this producer experience, the Southern SARE program offers Producer Grants -- a competitive grants program intended to help farmers and ranchers develop sustainable production and marketing practices.

Producer Grants are for research, education and outreach purposes only. They are designed to take some of the financial risk away from trying a sustainable ag solution to a current farm issue. If you are interested in implementing sustainable agriculture techniques on your farm, you may be eligible for one of our grants. 

The goal of the grant program is for farmers/ranchers to conduct projects to solve challenges and problems they face and develop information on what works and doesn’t work so that other farmers and ranchers facing those same problems can benefit from the results of the funded project.

Projects may be funded up to TWO years for a project maximum of $10,000 for an individual producer or $15,000 for a producer organization.

Focus Areas

Beneficial Insect Habitat– Developing cover crop or other plant mixes and locations that provide habitat (refuges) that keep populations of native beneficial insects living on the farm ready to attack crop pests as they occur.

Alternative Crops/Animals– Developing alternative crops, animals or products that help a producer’s operation become more economically sustainable.  These projects must be at least as environmentally sustainable as the existing crops, animals and products they supplement or replace.

Organic Agriculture – Projects that address the production, distribution, marketing and consumption of organic farm products.  This includes farmers adding value to organic products. Research into farming systems and practices that make use of on-farm biological cycles for soil, plant and pest management.

Sustainable Marketing Projects– Developing markets for existing or alternative crops, animals or products.

Sustainable Grazing Systems – Use of native grass species and or plant/animal management systems to make grazing systems more sustainable.

Soil Organic Matter Building/Protection/Management – Projects that increase the sustainability of farming systems by developing soil organic matter and soil biota.

Increasing Sustainability of Existing Farming Practices – Any practice or system that increases the sustainability of an existing farming practice.  The results should be able to be used by other farmers.

Appropriate Technology – Projects that develop a device or piece of machinery that promotes sustainable agriculture and can’t be purchased off the shelf.  The device or machinery must have application for other farmers/ranchers, be able to be built by them from information from your project and enable them to operate more sustainably

Agroforestry/Water Quality – The use of trees in farm systems to promote sustainability; this includes water quality and quantity

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Any farmer/rancher, or farmer organization in the Southern region is eligible to apply for a Producer Grant.
    • The Southern Region includes: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands.
  • They may only submit one proposal in a grant cycle.
  • Producer Grant funds may be used for the following purposes:
    • Costs of sampling and sample analysis,
    • Materials and supplies needed for the project.
    • Outreach expenses such as holding a field day,
    • Travel needed for the project,
    • Hired labor for things that you can’t do yourself,
    • Your labor, for project activities above and beyond your normal farming duties,
    • Refreshments at field days, e.g. coffee, cold drinks, fruit, pie, cookies, etc.
  • Projects must be developed, coordinated and conducted by producers (farmers and/or ranchers) or a producer (farmer/rancher) organization.
  • Producers must run their own farms, regardless of size; alone or with family or partners.
  • Producer organizations should be comprised primarily of farmers/ranchers and must have majority farmer representation on their governing board. 
  • Projects should fall within the proposal focus areas listed above and generate results that other farmers can adopt.


  • University of Georgia employees are not eligible to apply for Southern SARE Producer Grants.
  • Producer Grant funds may NOT be used for the following purposes:
    • Buying equipment.
    • Starting or expanding a farm or farming operation,
    • Permanent improvements to a farm or ranch, e.g. planting an orchard, buying a herd, bee hives, bees or buying animals.
    • Installing permanent fencing, permanent greenhouses, high tunnels, water containment tanks, irrigation pipe & pumps, building a pond or constructing a building,
    • Lunches or other full meals at field days or large gatherings,
    • Testing of commercial products