Maine Farmland Trust and the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association have introduced new Maine Farm Emergency Grants to assist farmers impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. A recent survey conducted by the Beginning Farmer Resource Network of Maine indicates farmers and food producers are experiencing significant market disruption.

This collaborative effort will provide support to farmers who need assistance mitigating the economic impact of COVID-19, and can help them adapt their businesses to be responsive to changing markets, according to a news release from the the association.

Grants of up to $2,000 will assist farmers with a variety of unexpected costs or challenges, such as a loss in sales or outlets, delayed production or hiring due to market disruptions, additional costs related to acquiring supplies or personal protective equipment for safe product handling, or having a need to ramp up production with additional labor or supplies.

Spring is a critical time of year for farmers and these grants will be administered quickly to provide support during this much needed time. Examples of efforts funds may be used for include costs associated with a new online ordering system or the costs of labor to pack personalized to-go bags and boxes.

For additional details about the program, including eligibility requirements and application details, visit mainefarmlandtrust.org or mofga.org.

The trust and association are complementary organizations that are combining efforts to provide Maine Farm Emergency Grants. These organizations are working together to ensure the viability of local farm businesses during this challenging time, and beyond. To help provide valuable resources and support for farmers, donations can be made at mofga.org.

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