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Agricultural News

Agricultural Enhancement and Diversification Program Deadline Approaching in October

Thu, 08 Sep 2011 11:45:00 CDT

Agricultural Enhancement and Diversification Program Deadline Approaching in October The Agricultural Enhancement and Diversification Program (AEDP) helps fund qualified agriculture-related projects across the state with 0% interest loans and grants. The program goals are expanding the state's value-added sector and farm diversification.

There are four types of funding sources available including farm diversification grants, marketing and utilization loans, cooperative marketing loans, and basic and applied research loans/grants. The application process is fairly simple and applications are accepted quarterly. The next deadline is Oct. 3.

AEDP funds are intended to produce agriculture-related products and create rural economic development. Applicants must be 21 years of age and must reside in and be legal residents of Oklahoma. The application form and additional information can be found online and is linked below.

Grant recipient Bill Jacobs is studying a new trellis system for blackberries growing on his Owasso Tree and Berry Farm. The rotating arm system is untried in Oklahoma, but has doubled production in other states. The innovative trellis bends plants toward the ground in winter to reduce cold damage and rotates upward to shield the fruit from too much sun during the growing season. Jacobs expects increased production from the rotating trellis system to create additional business opportunities for his family.

Pasteurized goat milk, yogurt and cheese are the tasty results of a grant to Canyon Ridge Farms near Welling. The grant to Marty and Chrys Tinsley helped them purchase a combination bulk tank and pasteurizer as part of their plan to build a grade-A processing plant. Their small herd of Nubian goats produces milk that becomes feta, mozzarella and chevre cheeses in several flavors.

It's never too late to complete an application. Program coordinators Gary Bledsoe and Jason Harvey are available to assist in the completion and review of applications prior to submission. Call Jason Harvey at 405-522-5563 or Gary Bledsoe at 405-830-1341. The Agricultural Enhancement and Diversification Program is administered by the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry.

Click here to visit their website and to find the application form and more.



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