Capacity Building Grants for    Welfare-Certified Farmers

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Are you already Certified Animal Welfare Approved (AWA), Certified Humane, or Global Animal Partnership (GAP) Animal Welfare Certified (steps 4-5+)? If so, grants of up to $2,500 are available for individual farmers, and up to $5,000 for joint applications, for projects that would build your farm's capacity, financial viability and/or the market for your animal welfare-certified products.

To apply, review the eligibility requirements below and complete an online application with information about your farm, proposed project, project budget, and optional photos. If you are applying for a Capacity Building Grant on behalf of multiple farms, each partner farm must complete a Capacity Building Grant Collaborator Form.

Applications and related materials must be submitted online by 5pm CST on December 2, 2019. Grants will be awarded in February 2020. Please contact Larissa McKenna, FACT’s Humane Farming Program Director, with any questions after reviewing these guidelines. Funding for Capacity-Building Grants has been made possible by generous support from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).


Eligibility requirements For Capacity Building Grants

1.      Farms must be located in the continental United States and already hold at least one of the following certifications:

2.      Farms must be working, independent family farms. These are farms on which a family or individual owns the animals, is engaged in the day to day management of the farm and its animals, derives a share of livelihood from the farm, and produces a livestock product for sale. If you are selected to receive a grant you will be required to furnish a valid Schedule F form or comparable form from your most recent tax return; this document is not required at time of application. If you haven’t filed taxes for your farm in the past but expect to do so for 2019 before the grants are awarded in February 2020, please note this on your application.

3.     Applications will be considered for projects that are designed to help build the capacity and financial viability of welfare-certified farms and the market for animal welfare-certified products. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications that address barriers to the growth of welfare-certified farming and/or provide welfare-certified producers with access to new markets. Examples of eligible projects include but are not limited to:

  • On-farm infrastructure or investments (e.g. on-farm improvements to increase scale and/or efficiency of the operation, purchase of capital investments such as certified breeding stock and refrigeration units, value added product development);

  • Supply chain infrastructure or investments (e.g. transporting products to market, coordinating pick-up, aggregation and distribution of food items from multiple sources);

  • Institutional or wholesale investments (e.g. investments to meet institutional/wholesale parameters or sourcing needs, such as increased production, product packaging, value added processing or administrative prerequisites);

  • Education or marketing efforts (e.g. educating local distributors to value welfare certifications, creating a cooperative, developing educational materials);

  • Joint sales efforts to buyers (e.g. outreach on behalf of multiple farms to local institutions, restaurants or markets to secure contracts that pull from multiple farms).

4.     Individual farmers may apply for Capacity-Building Grants of up to $2,500. Joint projects that will impact multiple farms may apply for grants of up to $5,000. All farms participating in joint projects must already hold one of the certifications listed above.

5.      Proposed on-farm projects must impact at least one of these species: pigs, broiler chickens, laying hens, turkeys, sheep, dairy cows, beef cattle, and/or goats.

6.      All proposed projects must begin and be completed within the time frame of February 2020 through May 2021. Projects that are completed before February 2020 are not eligible for funding.

7.      Only one application per farm per year will be accepted. This means that farms should choose one grant category and may only submit one application total.

8.      If awarded a grant, farmers must agree to a scheduled farm visit(s) by FACT and/or the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) staff, as well as flash photography and videos during the visit, and the use of the farm name/photos/video in FACT and/or ASPCA publications and websites.                                                           

9.      Eligible expense categories include: materials, supplies, equipment, shipping/delivery costs, consultant/professional fees, travel, training, and hired labor costs.

10.      No funds will be awarded to:

  • Farms that are in their first year of production or to non-profit organizations.

  • The purchase of land or recurring expenses such as animal feed.

  • Projects related to the production of raw milk.

  • Projects related to the slaughter, processing or transportation of live animals.

  • Certification fees associated with animal welfare certification.