The Growth Through Agriculture Mini Grant/Loan program (Mini Grant/Loan program) is a branch of the Montana Growth Through Agriculture program and was authorized by the 2009 Montana Legislature to encourage economic and agricultural development. (Read the program backgrounds in the links below for development criteria that are grant and loan specific.)
The maximum grant amount for any single application is $2,500 and the maximum loan amount is $5,000.
Applications are accepted for the Mini Grant program two times each year. The deadlines are posted on the main page for the GTA program.
There are no set deadlines for Mini Loan program applications which are accepted on an ongoing basis.
Applicants should be aware that funding decisions will generally occur 4-10 weeks from receipt of a final application. Mini Loan applications generally take longer to review.
Steps to Apply for a Mini Grant/Loan
- Read the Mini Grant Background and the Mini Loan Background in order to determine whether or not your project is eligible and learn more about the details of the program to begin the application process. Steps 6 and 7 of this list are a requirement for a Mini Loan application.
- Contact a local economic development organization, Small Business Development Center or, specifically for food product or farm-based energy business development, the Food and Agricultural Development Center network to discuss your project and for assistance in applying for a Mini Grant/Loan.
- Register and apply online. Mini Grant/Loan applications are available online through the WebGrants system at fundingmt.org. You may contact program staff to discuss your proposal by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 406-444-0511. If you are interested in applying, go to the WebGrants system to register and receive a password that will enable you to fill out and submit an application.
- Register with the Montana Secretary of State. If your company is not already registered with the Montana Secretary of State, you may need to do so before going any further with the application process. Organizations other than Sole Proprietorships must be registered with the Montana Secretary of State prior to submittal of a Mini Grant/Loan application.
- Fill out an application. Go to fundingmt.org and login with your username and password. Go through the following steps to open up and start an application.
- Select "Funding Opportunities" from the menu list.
- Select the most appropriate funding opportunity title. The funding opportunity contains AGR Growth Through Agriculture Mini Grant or AGR Growth Through Agriculture Mini Loan within the title.
- To open an application, click "Start a New Application".
- Prepare Financial Statements (for Mini Loans only). Prepare a cash flow statement using the appropriate spreadsheet form below, projected to a point of positive cash flow and profitability, and a balance sheet to accompany your application (minimum 2 year projection). All applications must include: a cash flow statement, a current and projected balance sheet, and a list of all key financial assumptions. The list of key assumptions should provide the basis for all major financial projections. Any Mini Loan application that does not include these items in the prescribed form will not be accepted.
- Complete and submit a credit check release form (for Mini Loans only). This form must be received before the application will be considered complete for review and consideration. Complete the form and submit it by fax or mail it to:
Montana Department of Agriculture
P.O. Box 200201
Helena, Montana 59620-0201
(406) 444-9442 fax
If you need assistance, please contact Growth Through Agriculture program staff by email at email@example.com or by phone at 406-444-0511.