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NC State Extension

Farms & Agribusiness

The agriculture industry and farming community are essential to our economy and the daily well-being of families across North Carolina. While the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is causing significant challenges and disruptions, NC State Extension will support our farmers and agribusinesses throughout this event. Together we will see it through, one day at a time.

While many resources are provided on the Farming Resources page linked below, we have included a selection of materials on this page to highlight some key information that is available.

COVID-19 Farming Resources

General Agribusiness Guidance

Agritourism

  • Agritourism operators are encouraged to join the N.C. Agritourism Network Association, as they are recommending actions and procedures to members as things progress (contact Kristy Phillips at kristyncana@gmail.com to learn more).
  • Sign up for the NCDA&CS Agritourism Marketing Office’s Monday Marketing Message.
  • Watch the COVID-19 Response Roundtable from the North American Farmers Direct Marketing Association.
  • The Visit NC Farms app has become a vital way for growers and producers to connect to consumers for fresh and local food, with updates and real-time notifications via county/regional app administrators to help keep their revenue streams going.

Animal Agriculture

Cleaning and Sanitization

Community Gardens

Farmers Markets / Retail

Find more guidance and best practices for preparing for COVID-19 and managing risk for food environments such as restaurants, grocery stores, food banks, gardens and farms at NC State Extension COVID-19 Food Safety Resources.

Farmers Markets

Consumer Sales

Retail

Financial Aid

  • Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (USDA)
      CFAP will provide financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a 5% (or greater) price decline or who had losses due to market supply chain disruptions related to COVID-19 and face additional significant market costs.
  • COVID-19 N.C. Rapid Recovery Program Launched for Small Businesses (Golden LEAF)
      The Golden LEAF Foundation announced $125 million in funding to launch a rapid recovery loan program in response to economic losses related to the coronavirus (COVID-19). Funding will support loans to eligible businesses for up to $50,000 with zero interest and no payments for six months.
  • Small Business Guidance and Loan Resources (SBA)
  • Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC) (Download PDF)
      North Carolina business relief resources related to COVID-19.
  • Emergency Mini-Grants for Farmers Impacted by COVID-19 (RAFI-USA)
      RAFI-USA will be distributing emergency mini-grants of $500 to North Carolina farmers who are drastically impacted by market sales disruptions caused by COVID-19. The mini-grant funds may only be used to cover personal household expenses; they are NOT intended to support the farm operation.
  • American Farmland Trust | Farmer Relief Fund
      The Farmer Relief Fund will award farmers with cash grants of up to $1,000 each to help them weather market disruptions caused by the coronavirus crisis. Initially, eligible applicants include any small and mid-size direct-market producers with annual gross revenue between $10,000 and $1 million.
  • Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) Emergency Mini-Grants for Livestock and Poultry Farmers
      The Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) is offering opportunities for livestock and poultry producers to receive a mini-grant of up to $500.
  • COVID-19 Rapid Response Fresh Grants (United Fresh)
      United Fresh Start Foundation will fund (25) $1,000 grants to produce companies and foodservice distributors who can provide fresh fruits and vegetables to schools, community groups and other emergency feeding sites for those in need. If a distributor can donate at least $1,000 worth of produce (or more), the Foundation will reimburse them $1,000.
  • Facebook Small Business Grants Program
      Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where they operate.
  • N.C. Small Business Resource Guide (Triangle Business Journal)
      Triangle Business Journal has compiled a list of various statewide resources and agencies small businesses in North Carolina can turn to for support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fruits and Vegetables

Find a comprehensive list of resources for fresh produce growers dealing with COVID-19 organized into Labor Availability, Markets and Farm Markets, Cleaning and Sanitation, Worker Health and Hygiene, Trade Association Information and Federal Coronavirus information on NC State Extension’s Fresh Produce Safety site:

Additional guidance and resources are available below:

Staffing and Farmworker Safety

State Agencies

Official Guidance

The CDC offers extensive guidance to United States citizens and residents about COVID-19. Visit the resources below to learn the status of the disease and how you can respond.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention World Health Organization U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Get the latest information about coronavirus and travel restrictions from the CDC. Access information and recommendations about COVID-19 from the World Health Organization (WHO). Find resources available to industry members and consumers on COVID-19 and food safety.