USDA underserved farmers

Jun 17, 2024
USDA opens disadvantaged farmer grant application process

Underserved and disadvantaged farmers can learn more about U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) grants that benefit them through a webinar.

Community-based and nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, and Tribal-serving organizations are invited to join staff from the USDA Office of Partnership and Public Engagement (OPPE) for a webinar about the 2501 grant application process.

A June 26 webinar is scheduled to provide an overview of the fiscal year 2024 grant application process.

USDA underserved farmers


The 1990 Farm Bill created the 2501 Program to help underserved farmers, ranchers and foresters who have historically experienced limited access to USDA programs and services. The 2014 Farm Bill expanded the 2501 Program to include veterans.

The objective of the 2501 Program is to show USDA’s commitment to ensuring that underserved and veteran farmers, ranchers and foresters can equitably participate in USDA programs. Grants are awarded to community-based and non-profit organizations, higher education institutions and eligible tribal entities with at least three years of experience in working with socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers or veteran farmers and ranchers. Individual farmers and ranchers are not eligible to apply for 2501 Program grants, according to a news release.

Because of differences in demographics, culture, economics, language and other factors, there is no one single approach to identifying solutions that can benefit underserved and veteran farmers, ranchers and foresters, according to the release. 2501 Program partners are based in local communities and rural areas where they serve a critical role in maximizing USDA’s outreach efforts by identifying systemic barriers that need to be removed and working to increase equitable participation in USDA’s programs and services, according to the release.

“For more than 30 years, and in partnership with organizations nationwide, the 2501 Program has helped reach underserved farmers and ranchers. With 2501 funding, organizations conduct education, training, farming demonstrations, and conferences on farming and agribusiness. This program is administered by OPPE,” according to the release.

Projects funded under the 2501 Program include, but are not limited to, conferences, workshops and demonstrations on various farming techniques and other efforts to connect underserved farmers and ranchers to USDA local officials to help communities increase their awareness of USDA’s programs and services.

From 2010 to 2023, the 2501 program awarded 615 grants totaling more than $194 million.

Applications must be submitted through and received by July 5.

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