Cover photo for Maine Agricultural Infrastructure Investment Program

Maine Agricultural Infrastructure Investment Program (ME-AIIP)

Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry

Closed February 25, 2022


About

The AIIP will provide critical funding for Maine farms and agricultural food processors pursuing infrastructure upgrades that will mitigate the adverse effects of COVID-19, increase capacity, enhance supply chain resilience, address market disruptions, and drive growth within the Maine agricultural and food economy while providing more locally-available foods to Mainers.

This funding will help farms and processors who source from Maine’s agricultural producers acquire the equipment and assets necessary to grow capacity in a manner that meets the markedly increased demand for Maine grown and produced products as well as the new operational requirements resulting from pandemic conditions.

The two primary goals of the AIIP are as follows:

  1. To provide an injection of critical funding for Maine farms and agricultural food processing businesses that have faced and continue to face market disruptions, supply chain issues, and workforce challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic and related public health response. Specifically, this funding will support projects that allow farms and businesses to increase production and processing capacity by investing in infrastructure and equipment; and

  2. To make investments in Maine agricultural processors that aid transitions to address new market dynamics and enable long-term sustainability in the sector.


Eligibility

To be eligible for this funding opportunity, applicants must:

  • Be a farm or agricultural business or organization with fewer than 200 employees;

  • Be located in Maine;

  • Be current and in good standing with all Maine State payroll taxes, sales taxes, and state income taxes (as applicable);

  • Not be in bankruptcy; and

  • Not have permanently ceased all operations.

Eligible Activities and Expenses:

  • Capital improvements to expand capacity (including expansion and modifications to existing buildings and/or construction of new buildings at existing or newly acquired sites) for the purpose of processing, aggregating, storing, and value-adding Maine agricultural products.

  • Upgrades to utilities (including water, electric, heat, refrigeration, freezing, and waste facilities).

  • Livestock intake and storage equipment.

  • Growing, processing, manufacturing, and storage equipment and construction.

  • Packaging and handling equipment (including sealing, bagging, boxing, labeling, conveying, and product moving equipment).

  • Additional warehouse equipment (including storage and drying/curing racks).

  • Purchase of waste treatment/management equipment (including tanks, blowers, separators, dryers, digesters, and equipment that uses waste to produce energy, fuel, or industrial products).

  • Facility reconfiguration (including labor and materials for changes necessary to meet social distancing guidelines).

  • Technology that allows increased capacity (to meet unanticipated demand) or business resilience (including software and hardware related to business functions, logistics, inventory management, plant production controls, temperature monitoring controls)

  • Consulting, and Technical Assistance (TA), including market research and feasibility studies, engineering and construction planning, land use planning, facility design and configuration planning, and other services that directly support future implementation of infrastructure-related capacity-building projects.

  • Leasehold improvements to rented buildings or facilities.


Terms

Priority will be given to applications that satisfy any combination of the following:

  • Process products intended for human consumption;

  • Source from multiple Maine farms;

  • Source more than 50% of product inputs from Maine;

  • Provide inputs for multiple down-stream food producers;

  • Support other Maine agricultural businesses by sharing processing infrastructure.


Resources


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Details

Release Date

January 14, 2022

Deadline

February 25, 2022

Organization

Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry (ME DACF)

Financial Instrument

Grant

Maximum Award Amount

$250,000

Image Credit

veeterzy


Updated January 20, 2022

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