By Dewitt Hardee, NCDA&CS Farmland Preservation
North Carolina county governments, nonprofit groups, and certified beekeepers pursuing farmland preservation projects and beehive grants have until December 15, 2017 to apply for funding assistance from the North Carolina Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund.
This year’s request for proposals includes statewide general appropriations for traditional farm preservation projects and the new NC Beehive Grant Fund for the purchase and construction of beehives.
The trust fund’s purpose is to support projects that encourage the preservation of qualifying agricultural, horticultural and forest lands to foster the growth, development and sustainability of family farms.
Grants can be awarded to secure agricultural conservation easements on lands used for agricultural production; to support public and private enterprise programs that promote profitable and sustainable agricultural, horticultural and forestland activities; for the development of agricultural plans; and for the purchase and construction of new beehives.
The NC Beehive Grant Fund is accepting its first cycle of applications this fall for certified beekeepers to establish new beehives. The request for proposals includes $25,000 for beehive projects on a first-come, first-served basis to eligible recipients.
“The new beehive grants will further support family farms in North Carolina,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “NCDA&CS is committed to conserving working lands throughout our great state and enhancing the agribusinesses that keep farms productive.”
The grant application and guidelines are available at www.ncadfp.org/CycleXI.htm. Call 919.707.3072 with any questions. Applications are due by 5pm on December 15, 2017.