Responding to Irene

The Vermont Farm Disaster Relief Fund Grant Application

The Vermont Agency of Agriculture has partnered with the Vermont Community Foundation to create the Vermont Farm Disaster Relief Fund. The purpose of the fund is to address critical needs of Vermont farms that sustained damage from Tropical Storm Irene, to help them continue or return to production. 

Update, August 2012: The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, working with the USDA Farm Service Agency, the Governor's Irene Recovery Office, the Vermont Association of Conservation Districts, and Castleton State College, recently conducted a survey to assess remaining needs among Vermont farmers. Based on the results of their work, the Foundation announced a sixth grant round to assist farmers with general recovery; the application deadline for this grant round was Monday, August 27. If you are still in need of assistance or have questions about the fund, please call Philanthropic Advisor Ryan Torres at 802-388-3355 ext. 289 to discuss your situation.

Download the Vermont Farm Disaster Relief Fund Application. [PDF]

Please follow the submission instructions on the application.

Timeline of Grant Round

Round 6

  • Application deadline* - August 27
  • Grant checks mailed - By September 15

*Application and supporting documentation must be received at the Foundation on this date.


A farm will be considered eligible if:

  • it is located in Vermont,
  • it is committed to remaining in business,
  • it had gross annual sales of at least $20,000 in calendar year 2010, or it is a small or start-up farm that can demonstrate its investment and potential for growth, and  

note: Individuals who received grants in previous rounds are eligible, although preference will be given to first-time applicants.

Uses of Grants

Grants may be used to help meet critical living needs by replacing infrastructure, seed, feed, livestock, supplies, and equipment lost as a result of Tropical Storm Irene, only to the extent those losses are not covered by insurance or can be covered by other sources of income. Grants may also be used to help pay outstanding bills a farmer may have such as farm mortgage costs, land lease payments, seeds and fertilizer, structural repairs, or animal feed bills. Grants cannot be used to help recover projected income from crops or livestock lost in the storm. 

Grant Decisions

Grant decisions will be made in consultation with representatives from the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, NOFA Vermont, Vermont Farm Bureau, Rural Vermont, Rutland Area Farm and Food Link, and University of Vermont Extension. Decisions will be made and checks will be mailed within two weeks of the application deadline.

Previous Grant Rounds

Round 1

  • Application deadline - September 19
  • Grant checks mailed - September 30

Round 2

  • Application deadline - September 30
  • Grant checks mailed - October 14

Round 3

  • Application deadline - October 14
  • Grant checks mailed - October 28
Round 4

  • Application deadline - December 2
  • Grant checks mailed - By December 31

Round 5 - Emergency Feed Assistance

  • Application deadline - February 17
  • Grant checks mailed - By March 2