Next Stage Grant Program
The Mill City Farmers Market Charitable Fund (MCFM-CF) is committed to the success and sustainability of the local food economy. MCFM-CF designed the Next Stage Grant to provide funding to local, regenerative farmers and other food producers who are improving sustainable farming and business practices or growing toward the “next stage” of their local food businesses. Since 2013, we have awarded over 85 Next Stage Grants totaling over $240,000. Learn more in our video below.
The Next Stage Grant program is funded solely through community support. Your donation directly empowers the farmers and producers at the heart of our local food system, giving them the resources needed to create long lasting community and environmental impacts.
2021 Next Stage Grant Awardees
- Bean Market – Tractor for more efficient cultivation
- Cultivating the Commons – Seed production research
- Dawn2Dusk Farm – Tractor for soil health and cover cropping
- Easy Yoke Farm – Fieldhouse greenhouse
- Gedef – Irrigation well at new farm site
- Hang Family Farm – Planting an orchard
- Karbin Based Farm & Market – Scaling Up with increased farm efficiencies
- Live Organically – Mobile chicken coop
- Mhonpaj’s Garden – Deer fence
- Nistler Farms – Greenhouse construction
- Oxheart Farm – Cows’ milk bottling equipment
- Pluck Flower Farm – Tools for fieldwork efficiency
- Rising Sun Farm & Orchard – Planting perennials for pasture health
- Shepherd’s Way Farm – Sheeps’ milk bottling equipment
- Twin Cities Green Farm – Plastic mulch lifter and winder
“The project is actively changing our lives and bringing much needed financial security to the farm.” -2020 Awardee Leah Bailey, Salt and Light Heritage Farm
Next Stage Grants range from $1,000 to $7,000 and past projects have included season extension, cold storage for produce and flowers, organic certification and experimenting with new tools and techniques.
Through equipment, technologies and other capacity building that increases yields, improves growing practices and supports small sustainable businesses, farmers and makers become more efficient and successful. We have seen these farmers’ hard work and innovation and know they can be successful with a little help from their community.