Agricultural Grant And Loan Applications Due April 1

Oklahoma City— Producers and producer groups who are interested in diversifying their production with non-traditional crops, adding value to crops through processing or marketing, or who are pursuing marketing cooperative ventures have until April 1 to complete applications for grants and interest free loans.

The Oklahoma Agricultural Enhancement and Diversification program, administered by the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry, has $168,000 in funding left for this final quarter of the fiscal year, said Marketing Director, Rick Maloney.

Projects have ranged from helping establish vegetable growers on a small scale to building a multi-million dollar processing facilities. Applicants to the program's loan programs are not required to be agricultural producers. Anyone with a promising plan for processing or marketing farm products is encouraged to apply.

“Without question this has been the most successful and well received program we have in terms of getting real help to producers of all size,” Maloney said. “Our goals were to help optimize local production and build economic opportunities in rural areas and our program participants have shown we're achieving those goals with the OAED.”

Applications are available online at www.oda.state.ok.us or by calling Jason Harvey at the ODAFF at (405) 522-5563. Harvey 's mailing address is: Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, 2800 N. Lincoln Blvd. , Oklahoma City , OK 73105 .