The Agriculture Development Division would like to share an update for potential applicants about fiscal year 2021 grant opportunities. Five grant programs which provide critical support to our educational institutions and agriculture and forestry businesses are funded via allocations in the State of Vermont’s annual budget. Because the COVID-19 pandemic has caused serious disruptions in the State’s budgeting process, the Governor approved a “skinny” budget in June which only authorized spending for the first quarter of the State’s fiscal calendar (July through September). The Legislature returns on August 25 and a top priority will be to finalize a budget for the remainder of the fiscal year, pending the Governor’s approval. Due to the uncertainty surrounding the budget and its impact on these programs, the Agency of Agriculture will be delaying the release of Farm to School grant applications. Read more ...
Infrastructure Grants are part of the Vermont Farm to School program. These grants reimburse schools and early childhood programs for infrastructure purchases that improve food programs and support farm to school efforts.
The purpose of the Vermont Farm to School Program, established by the Rozo McLaughlin Farm to School Act (6 V.S.A. § 4721), is to:
- Encourage Vermont residents in developing healthy and lifelong habits of eating nutritious local foods
- Maximize use by Vermont schools and early care providers of fresh and locally grown, produced or processed food
- Work with partners to establish a food, farm, and nutrition education program that educates Vermont children regarding healthy eating habits through the use of educational materials, classes, and hands-on techniques that inform children of the connections between farming and the foods that they consume
- Increase the size and stability of direct sales markets available to Vermont producers
- Increase participation of Vermont children in child nutrition programs by increasing the selection of available foods
- Expand and improve child nutrition programs in schools and early childhood education programs
The following entities are eligible to apply for this grant opportunity:
- Vermont registered or licensed early care providers, or a consortium of providers
- Independent schools participating in any federal child nutrition programs
- Individual public schools
- Supervisory unions or educational districts on behalf of a public school or school consortium
Applicants may not be awarded both this grant and a Vermont Farm to School Child Nutrition Grant during the same grant period.
Early care applicants who meet the following will be given special consideration:
- Currently participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
- Are Step Ahead Recognition System (STARS) providers
- Serve infants and toddlers in their program
How to Apply
The spring 2020 round of Farm to School Infrastructure Grants closed on April 19, 2020. Download the Request for Applications to learn more about this program, and subscribe to our newsletter to be notified when the next application is open.