Capacity Building Grants and Loans

FSA: Microloans: Microloans are a special subcategory of direct operating and farm ownership loans that provide flexible access to credit for small farming operations, including specialty, niche and local food producers. The Microloan Program includes a simplified loan application process and minimal paperwork. It provides additional flexibility in certain loan eligibility requirements, reduces documentation requirements and streamlines financial planning for small operations. Eligible applicants may obtain a microloan for up to $50,000.

FSA: Farm Storage Facility Loans provide low-interest financing for producers to build or upgrade farm storage and handling facilities to store eligible commodities they produce, including cold storage facilities, bulk tanks, storage facilities, new or used handling and storage equipment, portable or permanently affixed, and storage and handling trucks. A producer may borrow up to $500,000 per loan with a minimum down payment of 15 percent and loan terms are up to 12 years, depending on the amount of the loan. In addition, FSA provides a microloan option for producers who require financing of up to $50,000 with a 5 percent down payment and loan terms of three, five or seven years. Used storage structures, equipment and storage and handling trucks are eligible for three or five years only and the maximum amount allowed for a storage or handling truck is $100,000. Eligible commodities include corn, grain sorghum, rice, soybeans, oats, peanuts, wheat, barley, minor oilseeds, pulse crops, hay, honey, renewable biomass, fruits and vegetables, floriculture, hops, maple sap, milk, cheese, butter, yogurt, eggs, unprocessed meat and poultry, rye and aquaculture, excluding systems that maintain live animals through uptake and discharge of water.

FSA: Direct Farm Operating Loans may be made to purchase items such as livestock, farm equipment, feed, seed, fuel, farm chemicals, insurance and other operating expenses. They can also be used to pay for minor improvements to buildings, costs associated with land and water development, family subsistence and refinancing debts under certain conditions. To qualify for a direct loan, the applicant must be unable to obtain credit from commercial credit sources, able to show sufficient repayment ability and pledge enough collateral to fully secure the loan. A percentage of loan funds are targeted to beginning farmers and ranchers and minority applicants.

FSA: Down Payment Farm Ownership Loans were developed to help targeted underserved and beginning farmers and ranchers purchase a farm or ranch. These loans provide a way for retiring farmers to transfer their land to a future generation of farmers and ranchers. The applicant provides a 5 percent down payment; FSA provides 45 percent of the needed loan funds at a reduced interest rate and other financing provides the remaining 50 percent.

Texas Urban Forestry Council: Micro Grant Program: This program was created by the Texas Urban Forestry Council (TUFC) to promote the benefits and the value of Texas urban and community forest resources, recognizing the contributions to public infrastructure and human health. Our goal is to engage citizens and their communities, and to expand support for sustainable urban and community forest management throughout Texas. The amount of each TUFC micro grant will be $500 with a 1:1 match requirement.

TDA: Organic Cost-Share Reimbursement Program: Texas-based organic producers (crops, wild crops, and/or livestock) and/or handlers are eligible to participate in the National Organic Certification Cost Share Program (NOCCSP). Operations must possess current USDA organic certification to be eligible to receive reimbursements. More information here:

NRCS: Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) is a voluntary program that provides financial and technical assistance to agricultural producers to plan and implement conservation practices that improve soil, water, plant, animal, air and related natural resources on agricultural land and non-industrial private forestland. EQIP may also help producers meet Federal, State, Tribal, and local environmental regulations.

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