The Maine Senior FarmShare Program is administered through the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. Please see below for more details on this program.
The FarmShare program has been notified by USDA of our grant award for the 2016 FarmShare season. Farmer applications for the upcoming season were due February 19, 2016. We are working on the allocation packets for farmers for the 2016 FarmShare season. The program’s target for the allocation mailing to participating farmers is the first week of April. Thank you for your patience.
Unfortunately, our 2016 grant award is approximately 7% less than our final 2015 grant award amount. Therefore we will not be authorizing any new farmers at the start of the 2016 season. There is always a possibility that a new farmer may be authorized later in the season. Maine often receives a follow up grant award later in the season from USDA of prior year unused funds. If sufficient funds to authorize new farmers become available later in the season, a farmer who had not previously participated in FarmShare may be contacted to find out if they are still interested in participating.
Please understand that each year shares available for new farmers to participate are limited and possibly not available depending on our grant award dollar amount. New farms are only considered after allocating shares to prior year farmers who wish to participate again for the upcoming year. Share allocation to farmers follows the USDA procedure of distribution of SFMNP funds to previously participating State agencies. (I.e. the FarmShare program allocates available funds to keep prior year participating farmers at the level of shares they received the previous fiscal year if sufficient funds are available.) If funds are available after allocating to previous FarmShare farmers, new farmer applications are considered.
Share allocations to farms are based on a combination of many factors including a farm’s capacity and interest in providing shares; references; successful participation in prior years; the distribution of qualifying seniors around the state; the number of farms interested in participating; as well as the total funds available.
If you have questions, please call the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, Division of Agricultural Resource Development, Maine Senior FarmShare Program at 287-7526, or e-mail: email@example.com.