Arkansas Grown Arkansas Farm to School

Resources for Farmers

Starting Out

Need help with a business plan? How to apply for grants? Understanding the tax code? The best way to market your products? The Arkansas Small Business & Technology & Development Center offers free consulting services to farmers. 

Don’t know where to start? Get to know your county Extension agent! They offer free classes, training, and research-based advice on topics including gardening, farming, business development, health and fitness, 4-H, and more. The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture has an office in all 75 counties. Find your county office by clicking the button below.

Need help understanding the rules and regulations for produce safety? The Local, Regional & Safe Foods Team at the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension can help! They offer training information and courses for farmers. 

Need help keeping up with sales and expenses? Track Your Ag is a free, online expenses management tool developed by the Arkansas  Economic Development Institute. 

Funding Opportunities

Need financing? The Farm Credit Associations of Arkansas support rural Arkansas communities with reliable, consistent credit and financial services. Farm Credit finances farms, country homes, land, livestock, equipment, agribusinesses, and more. Click here to learn more.

Want to extend your growing season? The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service provides financial assistance through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). 

Have you farmed less than 10 years? The USDA offers Beginning Farmer programs for those who have farmed less than 10 years. The USDA can help you start or grow your operation through a variety of programs and services.

Funding needed for starting your farm? The USDA National Institute for Food & Agriculture (NIFA) offers competitive grants for mentoring, education, and assistance. The NIFA grants focus on education, training, and mentorship.

Selling Your Products

Interested in creating products from your crops such as salsas, jams, jellies, and sauces to sell, but you need a certified kitchen? The Share Grounds project offers certified kitchen space and technical support to start or grow your business. 

Need to know more about selling your products to consumers? The Arkansas Homemade Food Protection Guidelines book tells you what you need to know about the Arkansas Freedom Act. Click the button below for the Guidelines.

Want to sell your products at your local farmers market? The Arkansas Farmers Market Association partners with the Arkansas Center for Obesity Prevention and can help. 

Want to know what you can sell at farmers markets? The Farmers Market Vendor Guide can help! Click the button below for the Guide.

Selling Wholesale and to the Government

The Procurement Technical Assistance Center at the University of Arkansas provides free training and resources for Arkansas businesses– including farmers– to sell to the government.

For information on how to sell to Ben E. Keith, contact Brad May by clicking the button below.

For information on how to sell to Harps Food Stores, click on the button below.

For information on selling to Road Runner stores, click on the button below.

Beginning Farmers

The Center for Arkansas Farms and Food offers Apprenticeships and training through the Farm School. CAFF is teaching the next generation of farmers by providing farm education, training, networking, and resources. 

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) offers resources for beginning farmers including Self-Instruction Courses, publications, podcasts, videos, and blogs. 

Heifer USA provides  training for farmers year-round, providing assistance for small farms to earn a living income by partnering with Grass Roots Farmers Cooperative network. 

The Small Farm Program at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Cooperative Extension Program assists socially disadvantaged, limited-resource, and small producers. 

Beginning Farmers

Questions on your farming operation or would like to get started? The USDA is here to support you with state coordinators. Click the button below for contact information on your state coordinator.

The USDA offers programs for new and beginning farmers and ranchers. Click the button below for more information at a glance.

The Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program provides farmers with the technical production and business skills they need to start successful farm operations through hands-on training projects. 

The USDA Farm Service Agency supports beginning farmers through the Farm Ownership loans, Operating loans, and the Microloan programs. Click on the button to learn more.

Veterans

Are you a military veteran or currently serving our country? Are you interested in starting a career in agriculture? The Arkansas chapter of the Farmer Veteran Coalition offers a network that can mentor you through the process.

Are you a veteran looking to work on a farm? Or are you looking for help on your farm and would like to hire a veteran? FarmCorps is a job board connecting veterans with jobs in the farming industry.

USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service offers a list of resources designed for veterans and will leverage the Veterans affinity group to find a solution or the right resource for you.

The National Center for Appropriate Technology offers the Armed to Farm program, supporting veterans with experience and education for sustainable agriculture with a supportive network of farmer veterans.

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