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Agriculture Finance Resource Center

Agriculture finance is one of the most important components of state and local development finance efforts. Agriculture remains one of the country’s most important and productive industries and is the primary economic engine for most rural communities. From beginning and established farmers to agriculture production and processing, the needs of the agriculture industry are vast. Resources are also very limited and the barriers to capital for agriculture are daunting. Dozens of states offer financing resources such as loan funds, grants and aggie bonds to assist with the agriculture industry. In addition, the U.S. Department of Agriculture provides vast resources to rural communities to support agricultural development.

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-Understanding Agriculture Finance

Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic PlanMembers only Login
The Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic Plan provides broad recommendations are coupled with specific, actionable strategies. The implementation of this plan is critical to achieving greater agricultural and natural resource resiliency, as well as a secure future for the generations of farmers and ranchers to come.
COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide
USDA and its Federal partners have programs that can be used to provide immediate and long-term assistance to rural communities affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. This resource matrix organizes funding opportunities identified in the CARES Act and other federal resources that can help support rural America.
California Rural Infrastructure Finance Guidebook
CALED knows from its work supporting economic development throughout California that infrastructure financing is a challenge for many rural communities. CALED collaborated with CDFA to develop this guidebook to meet the need for a resource to help build capacity in those areas, as well as move economic development projects forward.
Tax-Exempt Bond Financing for Beginning and Low-Equity Farmers: The Case of Aggie BondsMembers only Login
Established in the 1980s, the ‘‘Aggie Bond’’ program provides beginning and low-equity farmers with access to capital. The bonds, which pay tax-exempt interest, may be used by qualifying famers for purchases of farm real estate and equipment. The authors use 25 years of data to examine whether the Aggie Bond program has had an impact on farm entrance, land ownership, and the size of operation.
Maximizing Rural Opportunities for Businesses and Communities in WisconsinMembers only Login
Urban communities like Milwaukee and Madison are not the only places looking for help to fund economic development. Wisconsin is filled with rural communities and small towns who are also in need of financing strategies. These areas face unique development financing challenges and needs such as downtown revitalization and talent and business development. Barb LaMue with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation explores the cutting-edge strategies driving development in the state, and how to access them.
View More Agriculture Finance

-Resources

View all Agriculture Finance Resources

-Agriculture Finance

San Diego County Food Vision 2030
San Diego County Food Vision 2030 holds a unique opportunity to build a better and stronger food system for all San Diegans, one that prioritizes health, sustainability, and justice. This ten-year plan provides our region with a clear pathway to improve the health of our local communities, environment, and economy.
City of Wichita / Sedgwick County Food System Master Plan Members only Login
The Wichita-Sedgwick County Master Food Plan was created from the energy, hard work, and input of our community. The over-arching goals in this plan are to: foster food system coordination and education; improve access to healthy food; and increase local food production.
Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic PlanMembers only Login
The Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic Plan provides broad recommendations are coupled with specific, actionable strategies. The implementation of this plan is critical to achieving greater agricultural and natural resource resiliency, as well as a secure future for the generations of farmers and ranchers to come.
Summary of State and Local Funding Sources in the American Rescue PlanMembers only Login
This table includes all the federal-to-local funding streams in the American Rescue Plan that reach cities and their residents. It does not include appropriations to Tribal Governments or Agency appropriations focused on program operations at the federal level with no further sub-allocation. It is a dynamic summary to be paired with the Federal Investment Guide produced by Accelerator for America, Drexel University, and the US Conference of Mayors.
American Rescue Plan: Federal Investment GuideMembers only Login
This report from Drexel University's Nowak Metro Finance Lab provides a guide to federal funding in the American Rescue Plan (ARP). The authors place a special emphasis on formula funds received by local anchors, competitive grants, and funds distributed to public authorities that city leadership can leverage to boost their recovery. They clarify which entities are responsible for applying for grant funds, when funding expires, and what role city and county leadership can play even when they will not be the primary applicant for funds.
View more Agriculture Finance Resources

-Aggie Bonds

Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic PlanMembers only Login
The Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic Plan provides broad recommendations are coupled with specific, actionable strategies. The implementation of this plan is critical to achieving greater agricultural and natural resource resiliency, as well as a secure future for the generations of farmers and ranchers to come.
CDFA 2018 Annual Volume Cap Report: An Analysis of Private Activity Bond & Volume Cap Trends
In 2018, the 50 states and the District of Columbia received $37.1 billion in new volume cap allocation, an increase of nearly $1.8 billion from 2017. Total private activity bond issuance slightly decreased from $24.86 billion in 2017 to $24.14 billion in 2018. Multi and Single-Family Housing Bond issuance increased by $1.11 billion in 2018, climbing from a combined $20.98 billion in 2017 to $22.09 billion in 2018.
Tax-Exempt Bond Financing for Beginning and Low-Equity Farmers: The Case of Aggie BondsMembers only Login
Established in the 1980s, the ‘‘Aggie Bond’’ program provides beginning and low-equity farmers with access to capital. The bonds, which pay tax-exempt interest, may be used by qualifying famers for purchases of farm real estate and equipment. The authors use 25 years of data to examine whether the Aggie Bond program has had an impact on farm entrance, land ownership, and the size of operation.
CDFA Food Finance White Paper Series: Food Systems & Bonds
Researched and written by CDFA, this is the third white paper in a series examining the potential creation of a food systems asset class that supports the market growth of local and regional food systems. This paper focuses specifically on bond financing, which CDFA considers a ‘bedrock tool’ for the historic and foundational role bonds have played in public financing.
CDFA 2017 Annual Volume Cap Report: An Analysis of Private Activity Bond & Volume Cap Trends
In 2017, the 50 states and the District of Columbia received $35.3 billion in new volume cap allocation, an increase of $205.3 million from 2016. Even though total volume cap capacity was lower in 2017, total private activity bond issuance increased dramatically from 2016, rising from $20.38 billion to $24.86 billion. Multi and Single-Family Housing Bond issuance also increased in 2017, climbing from a combined $18.47 billion in 2016 to $20.98 billion in 2017.
View more Aggie Bonds Resources

-Rural Development

Enhancing Local Workforce Development and Building for the Future
Automation, shifting demographics, COVID-19 and increased tele-work opportunities are reshaping the workforce landscape amid shifting industry needs. Counties, through local and regional partnerships and workforce development boards, are working with public, private, and nonprofit partners to help train job seekers and connect them with local employers.
Key Factors and Strategies for Urban and Rural CommunitiesMembers only Login
Through data analysis supported by stakeholder interviews and case studies, this research from the National League of Cities identifies factors that support local engagement in regional economies, how these factors vary for urban and rural places, and whether the benefits of economic connectivity are equitably distributed among places and people in regions.
CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series: Rural Broadband & Telehealth Financing Members only Login
During this installment of the CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series, experts explain how rural communities can embrace the challenges of financing high-speed internet for the economic and societal gains provided by broadband.
USDA Resource Guide for Rural Workforce DevelopmentMembers only Login
This guide was created by the USDA in 2021 for community leaders and other local entities. The guide highlights four key assistance types necessary to building a stronger rural workforce: 1) Workforce development planning; 2) Infrastructure and equipment financing; 3) Industry and employer engagement, entrepreneurship, and local business development; and 4) Education, training, and apprenticeship.
USDA Expands Access to Capital for Very Small Rural BusinessesMembers only Login
The USDA Rural Development published a final rule outlining changes to the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP) on June 7, 2021. The program provides loans and grants to microenterprise development organizations to help them establish revolving loan programs to assist microenterprises, businesses with 10 or fewer full-time employees.
View more Rural Development Resources

-U.S. Department of Agriculture

USDA Resource Guide for Rural Workforce DevelopmentMembers only Login
This guide was created by the USDA in 2021 for community leaders and other local entities. The guide highlights four key assistance types necessary to building a stronger rural workforce: 1) Workforce development planning; 2) Infrastructure and equipment financing; 3) Industry and employer engagement, entrepreneurship, and local business development; and 4) Education, training, and apprenticeship.
USDA Expands Access to Capital for Very Small Rural BusinessesMembers only Login
The USDA Rural Development published a final rule outlining changes to the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP) on June 7, 2021. The program provides loans and grants to microenterprise development organizations to help them establish revolving loan programs to assist microenterprises, businesses with 10 or fewer full-time employees.
CDFA Rural Development Finance Webinar Series: Assembling Capital for Rural Development
During this installment of the CDFA Rural Development Finance Webinar Series, learn about essential financing sources employed by rural communities to complete projects in today’s economy.
Summary of State and Local Funding Sources in the American Rescue PlanMembers only Login
This table includes all the federal-to-local funding streams in the American Rescue Plan that reach cities and their residents. It does not include appropriations to Tribal Governments or Agency appropriations focused on program operations at the federal level with no further sub-allocation. It is a dynamic summary to be paired with the Federal Investment Guide produced by Accelerator for America, Drexel University, and the US Conference of Mayors.
American Rescue Plan: Federal Investment GuideMembers only Login
This report from Drexel University's Nowak Metro Finance Lab provides a guide to federal funding in the American Rescue Plan (ARP). The authors place a special emphasis on formula funds received by local anchors, competitive grants, and funds distributed to public authorities that city leadership can leverage to boost their recovery. They clarify which entities are responsible for applying for grant funds, when funding expires, and what role city and county leadership can play even when they will not be the primary applicant for funds.
View more USDA Resources

-Programs Map

Search the map below for agriculture finance programs by state. This specialized search is part of CDFA's State Financing Program Directory, the only online resource cataloging the development finance programs offered by state governments. Click on a state to see a sample of state energy programs available. Login with a CDFA Member account at the top of the page to view full results.

-Case Studies

Agricultural financing tools are essential to American rural development and sustainability. CDFA has collected dozens of case study examples.

Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic PlanMembers only Login
The Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture Strategic Plan provides broad recommendations are coupled with specific, actionable strategies. The implementation of this plan is critical to achieving greater agricultural and natural resource resiliency, as well as a secure future for the generations of farmers and ranchers to come.
COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide
USDA and its Federal partners have programs that can be used to provide immediate and long-term assistance to rural communities affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. This resource matrix organizes funding opportunities identified in the CARES Act and other federal resources that can help support rural America.
California Rural Infrastructure Finance Guidebook
CALED knows from its work supporting economic development throughout California that infrastructure financing is a challenge for many rural communities. CALED collaborated with CDFA to develop this guidebook to meet the need for a resource to help build capacity in those areas, as well as move economic development projects forward.
Tax-Exempt Bond Financing for Beginning and Low-Equity Farmers: The Case of Aggie BondsMembers only Login
Established in the 1980s, the ‘‘Aggie Bond’’ program provides beginning and low-equity farmers with access to capital. The bonds, which pay tax-exempt interest, may be used by qualifying famers for purchases of farm real estate and equipment. The authors use 25 years of data to examine whether the Aggie Bond program has had an impact on farm entrance, land ownership, and the size of operation.
Maximizing Rural Opportunities for Businesses and Communities in WisconsinMembers only Login
Urban communities like Milwaukee and Madison are not the only places looking for help to fund economic development. Wisconsin is filled with rural communities and small towns who are also in need of financing strategies. These areas face unique development financing challenges and needs such as downtown revitalization and talent and business development. Barb LaMue with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation explores the cutting-edge strategies driving development in the state, and how to access them.
View More Case Studies

-Headlines

-Webcasts

Enhancing Local Workforce Development and Building for the Future
Automation, shifting demographics, COVID-19 and increased tele-work opportunities are reshaping the workforce landscape amid shifting industry needs. Counties, through local and regional partnerships and workforce development boards, are working with public, private, and nonprofit partners to help train job seekers and connect them with local employers.
CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series: Rural Broadband & Telehealth Financing Members only Login
During this installment of the CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series, experts explain how rural communities can embrace the challenges of financing high-speed internet for the economic and societal gains provided by broadband.
CDFA Rural Development Finance Webinar Series: Financing Disaster Resiliency in Rural Communities
During the first installment of the CDFA Rural Development Finance Webinar Series, hear about a new technical assistance program from CDFA designed to support rural communities that have recently experienced a natural disaster. Experts discussed the variety of financing tools available from federal, state, and local sources to encourage investment resilient infrastructure.
CDFA - Ice Miller Broadband Financing Series: Case Studies & Best Practices of Broadband in P3s
Public-Private Partnerships, or P3s, have been used across the country to finance broadband. As part of our collaboration with Ice Miller LLP, this video will cover best practices of the P3 model and provide case studies that explore the various avenues of broadband projects in both rural and urban areas.

CDFA National Sponsors

  • Baker Tilly
  • BNY Mellon
  • Bricker & Eckler LLP
  • Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
  • Business Oregon
  • CohnReznick
  • FBT Project Finance Advisors LLC
  • Frost Brown Todd LLC
  • gener8tor
  • Hawkins Delafield & Wood LLP
  • Ice Miller LLP
  • KeyBanc Capital Markets
  • Kutak Rock LLP
  • McGuireWoods
  • MuniCap, Inc.
  • NW Financial Group, LLC
  • PGAV Planners, LLC
  • SB Friedman Development Advisors
  • Stern Brothers
  • Stifel Nicolaus
  • U.S. Bank
  • Wells Fargo Securities
  • Z. The Bond Buyer
Become a Sponsor