PALATINE BRIDGE — A Montgomery County farm has been awarded more than $37,000 in a state grant to help with costs for running the business.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced Monday that more than $1 million has been awarded to 27 new and early-stage farms through the New York state New Farmers Grant Fund.
One of these farms is Dygert Farms Creamery in Palatine Bridge, which was awarded $37,500.
The New Farmers Grant Fund is administered by Empire State Development, in consultation with the state Department of Agriculture and Markets.
Nearly 60 applications were submitted for program funding this round, with applicants scored based on specific criteria, including demonstrating how the project expands or diversifies its agricultural production.
Grant funds will be used for project costs associated with the construction of farm buildings, and the purchase of equipment and supplies.
“Agriculture remains a major New York industry, and with support from the New Farmers Grant Fund, we will be making investments that will pay dividends for future generations of farmers,” Cuomo said in a news release. “The fund continues to provide access to capital to help new and early farms grow, while supporting the expansion of businesses statewide, and with this latest round of awards, New York will help increase production and support this critically important part of our economy for years to come.”
The fund provides grants of up to $50,000 to assist with up to 50 percent of eligible project costs, with the remaining 50 percent being matched by the recipient.
All eligible farm owners must be within the first 10 years of ownership and the farm must have a minimum of $10,000 in income from sales of products grown or raised on the farm. This year, the program eliminated the 150 acres or less requirement and accepted farm applicants of all sizes.
Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara said with agriculture on the rise, the state must be committed to ensuring the next generation of farmers has the resources they need.
“Farming is a way of life in many communities and the New Farmers Grant Fund is a great tool to encourage that tradition to continue,” Santabarbara said in a news release. “Making these critical investments in upstate farms will help ensure our state continues to be the agricultural leader it has been for generations.”
Complied by K. Minor