Thursday, December 30, 2010

Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program Grant

USDA has opened the application period for the Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program (FSMIP) which provides matching funds on a competitive basis to State Departments of Agriculture.  Projects are to assist in exploring new market opportunities for U.S. food and agricultural products, and to encourage research and innovation aimed at improving the efficiency and performance of the U.S. marketing system.

Funds can be used on applied research projects that address barriers, challenges, and opportunities in marketing, transporting, and distributing U.S. food and agricultural products domestically and internationally. 
Eligible agricultural categories include livestock, livestock products, food and feed crops, fish and shellfish, horticulture, viticulture, apiary, and forest products and processed or manufactured products derived from such commodities. Proposals that address issues of importance at the State, multi-State, or national level are appropriate. FSMIP also seeks unique proposals that reflect a collaborative approach between the States, academia, the farm sector and other appropriate entities and stakeholders.

Grants range from $25,000 to $135,000 and if you have a project that would be applicable please contact your state department of agriculture, as they can apply on your behalf.  Applications are due on February 17, 2011.  More information can be found here.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Merry Christmas from all of us at ISDA

Just wanted to share some images of Christmas around the ISDA office this week. 
Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas!!!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Woody Biomass Utilization Grant

USDA-Forest Service has opened the 2011 Woody Biomass Utilization Grant.  Projects will use woody biomass material for bioenergy creation.  This program promotes projects that target and help remove economic and market barriers to using woody biomass fro renewable energy.  Assist projects that produce renewable energy from woody biomass.  Reduce forest management costs by increasing the value of biomass and other forest products generated from hazardous fuels reduction and forest health activitiess on forested land.  Create incentives and/or reduce business risk to increase use of woody biomass from our nation's forest lands for renewable energy projects. 

Eligible applicants include local government municipalities, non-for-profits, schools and small businesses. 

Some examples of projects include: woody biomass boiler for steam at a sawmill.  Mom-pressurized hot water system for various applications at a school, biomass power generator.

Applications are due March 1, 2011 and more information can be found here. 

Friday, December 10, 2010

America's Farmers Grow Communities Program

Farmers who are 21 years or older and actively engaged in farming a minimum of 250 acres of corn, soybeans and/or cotton; or 40 acres of open field Vegetables (as defined above) ; or at least 10 acres of tomatoes, peppers, and/or cucumbers grown in protected culture (glasshouse, nethouse, plastic) can apply to the America’s Farmers Grow Communities Program, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund.  This program supports rural farming communities by offering farmers the opportunity to register to win $2,500 for their favorite community charity. Recipients could include FFA, 4-H, school or other civic organization – e.g., hospital, fire department or food pantry.

Monsanto realizes the importance of rural communities and want to support the communities where farmers, Monsanto Company’s customers, live and work.  This program is available in 38 states and 1,204 counties.  The applicaiton period closes December 31st so you will need to act quickly in order to take advantage of this opportunity.  Winners were be selected in January and announced in February.  For more details and information visit their website.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's cold outside so stay inside and apply for college scholarships

From time to time on this blog I have mentioned scholarship opportunities for students going off to college.  But now it that winter is coming and it's getting cold outside this is a perfect time to stay inside and start looking for and applying for scholarships.  Grab a cup of hot cocoa and a pen and start applying today because some of these applications will be due in February and March.

Are you an FFA Member?  The National FFA Organizations awards around $2 million to students in various career paths based on their FFA involvement.  Check out the National FFA Organization website for more details as applications are due February 15, 2011.

If you are not an FFA Member don't worry, as there are plenty of companies and foundations who offer scholarships such as Cargill, Farm Credit Services and Monsanto

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