NMDA Healthy Soil Program
The Healthy Soil Program (HSP) was created when the Healthy Soil Act was signed into law on April 2, 2019. The purpose of the program is “to promote and support farming and ranching systems and other forms of land management that increase soil organic matter, aggregate stability, microbiology and water retention to improve the health, yield and profitability of the soils of the state.”  This purpose is achieved by funding projects aimed at improving soil health, as well as related education and outreach efforts. The application window for FY23 Healthy Soil Program grants is now closed.  Check the NMDA website for more information.

NMDA Agricultural Workforce DevelopmentProgram
New Mexico-based agricultural businesses may apply for internship funding through the New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) Agricultural Workforce Development (AWD) Program. Funds will be available until fully expended and on a first-come, first-serve basis for use after July 1, 2022, and no later than May 31, 2023.Through this program, NMDA will reimburse a participating agricultural business up to 50% of the actual cost to employ intern(s) on their farm or ranch operation, up to $5,000 per intern. A business may hire up to three interns in one year and the internship must be at least 130 hours long.
More information on the NMDA website

NM Local Economic Development Act (LEDA)
83 New Mexico communities have now passed a Local Economic Development Act (LEDA). Through passing LEDA, a community adopts an ordinance creating an economic development organization and a strategic plan. The enactment and utilization of LEDA allows public support of economic development to foster, promote, and enhance local economic development efforts while continuing to protect against the unauthorized use of public money and other public resources.  This empowers communities to embark on economic development projects tailored to their local needs. In essence, LEDA is used to enter into a “public private partnership” for an economic benefit. This can include agricultural business ventures: Growing Rural Communities from Within


June 3, 2022: USDA announces $43 Million for Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production
USDA announced an investment of $43.1 million for grants and cooperative agreements for urban agriculture. Specifically, USDA is investing $10.2 million in new cooperative agreements to expand compost and food-waste reduction efforts and $14.2 million in new grants to support the development of urban agriculture and innovative production projects. Learn more

Rural Business Development Grants (RBDG)
This program is designed to provide technical assistance and training for small rural businesses. Small means that the business has fewer than 50 new workers and less than $1 million in gross revenue. Funds may be used for a variety of purposes, including training and technical assistance, acquisition or development of land or rural business incubators. Solar projects on farms and ranches (e.g. solar-powered water pumps) may be eligible for funding. Grant amounts range from $2,500 -$500,000. For more information, contact Carlos Contreras 505-761-4958 at the USDA RD Albuquerque office.

Value Added Producer Grants (VAPG)
This program helps agricultural producers enter into value-added activities related to the processing and marketing of new products. The goals of this program are to generate new products, create and expand marketing opportunities and increase producer income. You may receive priority if you are a beginning farmer or rancher, a socially-disadvantaged farmer or rancher, a small or medium-sized farm or ranch structured as a family farm, a farmer or rancher cooperative or are proposing a mid-tier value chain. Maximum grant amounts for Planning Grants $75,000; Working Capital Grants: $250,000.For more information, contact Carlos Contreras 505-761-4958 at the USDA RD Albuquerque office.

Western SARE
SARE’s mission is to advance—to the whole of American agriculture—innovations that improve profitability, stewardship and quality of life by investing in groundbreaking research and education. Western SARE provides grants in several categories: Research and Education, Professional Development, Farmer/Rancher, Professional/Producer, Graduate Student in Sustainable Agriculture and Research to Grassroots. Each of these grants is available at specific times of the year. Check the website for deadlines and more information.

Natural Resources Conservation Planning for Tribal Producers
The Intertribal Agriculture Council is working with the NRCS in an effort to further enhance the stewardship of Native American lands by providing improved access to conservation planning technical assistance, management resources, and useful land stewardship tools. This presents Native producers with a unique opportunity to build upon their land stewardship knowledge base as they continue to improve the sustainability, health and profitability of their operation’s resources. As always, our programs are made available at no cost to Tribal producers.

USDA/NRCS Financial Assistance
NRCS offers voluntary programs to eligible landowners and agricultural producers to provide financial and technical assistance to help manage natural resources in a sustainable manner. Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG): Through these programs the agency approves contracts to provide financial assistance to help plan and implement conservation practices that address natural resource concerns or opportunities to help save energy, improve soil, water, plant, air, animal and related resources on agricultural lands and non-industrial private forest land. Contact your local NRCS Field Office for more information and to start working on conservation planning.

By the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition’s (NSAC). This guide provides an in-depth look at dozens of federal programs and policies most important to sustainable agriculture, and details how they can be accessed by farmers, ranchers, and grassroots organizations nationwide. Includes information about the following federal programs: Beginning & Socially Disadvantaged Farmers, Conservation & Environment, Credit & Crop Insurance, Food Safety, Healthy Food Access, Local & Regional Food Systems, Organic Production Renewable Energy, Rural Development, and Sustainable & Organic Research.

Not just for organic producers, this great summary gives you an overview about available federal programs. See what might be right for your business, including beginning farmer loans, conservation costs, innovation grants, value added producer grants, aggie bonds and private sector support.


Local Farmer Innovation Enterprise (LIFE) Grants
The New Mexico Farmers’ Marketing Association is offering grants of up to $3,000 for farmers wishing to solve problems, test innovations, or mitigate risk. Grant applications must meet one of these two purposes: 1. To expand specialty crop varieties and/or crop volume sold through New Mexico retail outlets; 2. To pilot or expand regenerative agriculture practices. If you are considering a regenerative project, you will need to address any or all of the 5 Key Principles of Soil Health. Check the website for more information and deadlines.

Micro-Loan Programs for New Mexico Farmers
Various micro-loans are offered through New Mexico Farmers’ Marketing Association, Santa Fe Farmers’ Market  Institute, La Montañita (LaM) Fund and Kiva Zip. To learn more, visit the websites.

Farmers of Color Network Infrastructure Fund
Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA (RAFI-USA) launched the Farmers of Color Network in 2017 to assist farmers in accessing farm infrastructure resources, securing land and other assets, supporting farmer-to-farmer learning, and providing technical support. The new Infrastructure Fund builds on the success of previous RAFI-USA regranting programs and will focus exclusively on farmers of color in several Southern states. The next round of funding will be awarded in Spring 2021.

Akiptan is a Native American Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) that provides loans and technical assistance to those in Indian Agriculture. Akiptan offers a whole suite of services that include financing youth, start ups, operating costs and ownership and works with the client to assist with technical support as well as provide financial literacy training to help create a knowledgeable borrower.

Seventh Generation Fund
The Seventh Generation Fund is an Indigenous non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and maintaining the uniqueness of Native peoples throughout the Americas. It offers an integrated program of advocacy, small grants, training and technical assistance, media experience and fiscal management, lending its support and extensive expertise to Indigenous grassroots communities. Its Sustainable Communities Program Area provides seed money, organizational support and technical training to Native grassroots community-based projects striving for holistic community health and renewal. It supports traditional agricultural methods, renewable forms of energy and sustainable strategies for development that preserve or restore traditional life-ways for future generations.

NM Small Business Assistance Program
The New Mexico Small Business Assistance (NMSBA) Program provides New Mexico small businesses facing technical challenges access to the expertise and capabilities of Los Alamos and Sandia national laboratories at no cost to the business. “Rent a scientist” to perform soil testing or install an on-farm weather station, for example. Applications accepted online on a rolling basis –best to apply early in the year.

Brighter Future Fund Grant
This American Farmland Trust (AFT) Program provides direct support to farmers and ranchers across the country. A major commitment of the program is to empower, uplift and support the work of a wide range of farmers. Priority will be given to BIPOC, women, and LGBTQ+ farmers. Awards up to $5k will be granted. Grant applications will begin to be accepted in late-November 2021. Applications will be reviewed and awarded in the order the applications are received based on eligibility. AFT will continue to receive applications and make awards until available funds are expended. 

Educational grant opportunity offered through the New Mexico Organic Farming Conference (NMOFC).
The 2022 Conference will not occur. Instead, the committee will grant up to 18 scholarships to support educational opportunities and advance organic production knowledge and education through conference or workshop attendance. 
Limit of $1,500 per applicant. You may apply one time per year (may be more than one application per farm). May be in person or virtual. Grant use is for organic educational opportunities in the continental US. For example:  S.A.R.E. Training, MOSES Organic Farming Conference,  Mother Earth News Fair, workshops, etc. NMOFC committee members and family members not allowed to apply. 
For More Information: You will need to email and request the application form at: If you have not received an email confirming request within one week, please resend request. Committee will review requests monthly.   Funding available until program runs out. 

The Livestock Conservancy offers Heritage Microgrants to U.S. producers working with livestock and poultry breeds listed on the Conservation Priority List.
This competitive program provides support for farm-related operations, including, but not limited to, livestock, poultry, processing, milk, meat and egg production and sales, agritourism, wool milling, promotions, and marketing. Awards typically range from $500 to $2,000. There is also a youth grant available for individuals 8 to 18 years of age who are actively working with breeds listed on the Conservation Priority List, as well as a fencing product microgrant and a breed association microgrant. Call for applications, May 27 – August 19, 2022


NCAT/ATTRA grant database
Nationwide clearinghouse of available grant and funding opportunities within the realm of Sustainable Agriculture.

Farm Aid Online Resource Directory
Farm Aid’s online directory contains more than 750 organizations that work directly with farmers nationwide on a variety of issues, from financial counseling to marketing and conservation. Searchable by state.

Land Access

Finding Farmland Calculator and Online Course
National Young Farmers Coalition designed this free, online tool that young and beginning farmers and ranchers can use to approach the financial decisions related to acquiring land. Compare financing options, analyze costs, and understand what you can afford. También en Español!

LandLink NM is a match-making service designed to connect interested farmers with available land and other resources. LandLink NM is looking for aspiring farmers looking for land, and landowners looking for someone to farm their land.


NM Healthy Soil Working Group is offering scholarships for online or in-person courses to further your understanding of soil health and regenerative agriculture. Learn more and apply!

Holistic Management International is offering scholarships to New Mexico’s farmers and ranchers who want to work with nature in the Land of Enchantment. Applicable towards all HMI courses and private consultation. Apply here!

Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) is offering scholarships of up to $400 for livestock and poultry farmers to attend conferences, workshops and training events – including virtual events. Scholarships will be awarded on a first come, first served basis to eligible farmers until funding is depleted. Apply here!