Federal coronavirus relief funding is now available to Vermont farmers, sugar makers, meat processors and agricultural food and forest products businesses to help cover losses and costs related to the pandemic.
A total of $8.5 million in grants is available and will be distributed to applicants on a first-come, first-served basis. The deadline to apply for the Agriculture and Working Lands Assistance Application is Oct. 1.
“Farmers have not stopped working since the pandemic and are providing us with food but many of their markets were disrupted, creating economic hardship," said Governor Phil Scott in a written statement. “These grants are intended to alleviate losses and added expenses due to the impacts of COVID-19.”
The grants are also available to farmers markets, slaughterhouses and producer associations.
Applicants are advised to complete a W-9 form and collect records of losses and costs since March 1 that are related to the public health emergency. The Vermont Agency of Agriculture will hold webinars on the application process, with the first one happening Friday at 12 p.m.
Vermont reported three new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday for a statewide total so far of just over 1,350. The number of deaths remained at 58. Two people were hospitalized with COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus.