Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund awards more than $3.8 million for projects

The N.C. Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund recently awarded more than $3.87 million to help communities across the state protect farmland and promote agricultural enterprises. More than $2 million went towards obtaining conservation easements on lands that border military bases in Hyde and Bertie counties. This money was set aside by the General Assembly to maintain working lands as buffer zones around military bases.

“I am excited that we have been able to assist with the funding of easements on more than 2,500 acres of farmland across our state,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “These easements take the development pressure off of these families and help maintain their status as working lands for generations to come.”

  • The N.C. Forestry Association received $30,000 to aid in the development of the Working Lands Trust as an operating land trust through outreach and education.
  • The Franklin County Cooperative Extension Service received $20,000 for a feasibility study to determine the need and location for a multipurpose facility and farmers market in Franklin County.
  • Orange County received $32,500 for the Client Requested Operations Purchase (CROP) Fund, providing short-term cash flow assistance, allowing them to defer payment on specialized services, installation fees on new equipment, or consulting services during their production season. Clients will then re-pay the fund as their product is sold after production season.
  • Carolina Farm Stewardship received $7,420 to purchase biosecurity supplies for 35 farmers, increasing their ability to offer safe agritourism events and provide biosecurity education to consumers, neighboring farmers and regional partners.
  • The Mitchell Soil and Water Conservation District received $109,730 to assist with the purchase of a 20-year easement on 125 acres in Mitchell County.
  • Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy was granted $157,500 for the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 115 acres in Buncombe County.
  • The Catawba Lands Conservancy was granted $89,700 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 103 acres in Lincoln County.
  • The Piedmont Lands Conservancy was granted $476,416 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 344 acres in Caswell County.
  • The Sandhills Area Land Trust was granted $44,786 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 57 acres in Scotland County.
  • The Southwestern NC RC&D was granted $213,719 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 50 acres in Haywood County.
  • The Haywood County Soil and Water Conservation District received two grants: $173,000 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 46 acres and $78,277 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 21 acres, both in Haywood County.
  • The Foothills Conservancy was granted $278,000 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 180 acres in Cleveland County.
  • The LandTrust for Central North Carolina received $71,500 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 72 acres in Randolph County.
  • The Triangle Land Conservancy was awarded $18,500 to assist with the purchase of a perpetual conservation easement on 53 acres in Johnston County.
  • The Working Lands Trust received four grants totaling over $2.07 million to assist with the purchase of perpetual conservation easements on farms near military installations in Hyde and Bertie counties. The trust received $859,406 to assist in purchasing an easement on 462 acres and $857,888 to assist in purchasing a perpetual easement on 386 acres in Hyde County. The trust also received $186,890 to protect 186 acres and $166,800 to assist in purchasing a perpetual easement on 213 acres in Bertie County.

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