Tennessee Agriculture Cost Share Programs
The Tennessee Department of Agriculture has released the 2016 application for the Tennessee Agricultural Enhancement Program (TAEP). Applications must be postmarked or hand delivered between October 1 and November 1, 2016. Do not postmark prior to October 1. Applicants can also apply online at: www.TN.gov/taep
An important change for this year is that requests for funding will now be approved based on applicant determined priorities instead of on a first come, first serve basis.
Also, an added item to the TAEP is the ability for producers to cost share on a covering for their livestock working facilities. The structure has to be a new build and there are minimum size restrictions. Approvals will be allocated for the maximum amount of $2,500. Other requirements are listed on the application or see website for more details.
Through TAEP, farmers can qualify for 35 or 50 percent cost share, ranging from a maximum of $2,000 to $10,000 depending on the project. This year’s program will again offer cost sharing opportunities for genetics, livestock equipment, hay storage, working facility cover, feed storage, grain storage and producer diversification opportunities. In addition to the new approval process, other changes this year include:
• Genetics - Cost share funds are now available for Goats/Sheep Genetics in addition to Cattle Genetics.
• Hay Storage - Applicants can no longer receive funding for Hay Storage in two consecutive program years, and a maximum reimbursement amount per square foot has been established.
• Producer Diversification – All industry sectors are now eligible for 50 percent cost share including: Fruits/Vegetables, Honey Bees, Horticulture, Value-Added, Agritourism, and Organics.
• Poultry Grower – for growers of broilers of more than 75,000/yr or non-broilers of 10,000/yr.
TAEP was established in 2005 and supported by the General Assembly to increase farm income by helping farmers invest in better farming practices and by encouraging diversification and innovation. Nearly 40,000 farm projects have been funded since the program’s inception.
Applications are available at most farm agencies including USDA Farm Service Agency, UT Extension and Farm Bureau offices, as well as most farm supply stores. To ensure accuracy, producers are encouraged to work with their local extension agent or local TDA representative when completing the application.
Producers can get important messages and updates on the program by calling 1-800-342-8206. For more information or to download an application, visit the UT Extension office in Grundy County or log onto www.TN.gov/taep.