Cover photo for APR Improvement Program

APR Improvement Program (AIP)

Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources

About

AIP provides business planning and technical assistance to commercial farms with land that has already been protected through MDAR’s Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) Program.

The program assists with issues of financial viability, resource conservation, family succession, modernization of infrastructure and other issues that may enhance the long term continued use of the agricultural resource. Grant funds of $40,000-$120,000 may be available on a cost reimbursement basis, with a 25% required match, for capital infrastructure improvements on the farm identified through the planning process including resource improvements, new or improved agricultural buildings including barns, livestock housing, farm stands or processing facilities.

Eligibility

Eligible respondents must be operators of farmland that has been protected through funding from the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources’ Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) Program for at least 5 years and have been actively farming this APR property for at least the past 3 years. Eligible farms must be private for profit operations with Gross farm income of at least $10,000, as shown on Schedule F or Form 1120, or other relevant tax statements from the most recent tax year. Eligibility requirements may vary from year to year and can be found during open application periods in the Request for Responses for the APR Improvement Program at https://www.mass.gov/service-details/apr-improvement-program-aip.

Terms

If selected for Phase I of the program, farmers must agree to participate in a business planning process intended to help them increase the economic viability of their farm. Participants receive assistance to develop a business plan including financial projections. Additional technical assistance may also be available. This process usually takes about 5 months. Upon approval of a completed plan by the program coordinator, the farm may be eligible to move to Phase II of the Program to receive a grant for eligible capital projects identified in the plan intended to increase farm viability. 

Resources

Similar Programs

Details

Release Date

March 1, 2021

Organization

Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR)

Financial Instrument

Grant

Minimum Award Amount

$40,000

Maximum Award Amount

$120,000

Image Credit

Stefano Lubiana

Updated July 21, 2021

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