The Kentucky Agricultural Finance Corp. has launched a new loan program to provide low-interest financing to beginning agri-entrepreneurs who are attempting to diversify their farming operations through non-traditional agricultural production or services.
The Diversification through Entrepreneurship in Agribusiness Loans (DEAL) will provide up to $100,000, not to exceed 50 percent of a project’s costs. Eligible applicants must receive the majority of their household income from farming with less than $100,000 annually coming from off-farm sources.
“This program combines features of KAFC’s infrastructure and beginning farmer loan programs to provide a financing option for agri-entrepreneurs,” said Roger Thomas, chief executive officer for KAFC. “This program addresses capital needs of ventures that may not fit in traditional agriculture production programs.”
The program may provide financing for equipment purchases, facilities, permanent working capital, real estate, investment into an existing agribusiness or other investments at the discretion of the KAFC board. The program does require the applicant to have a mentor and provide a five-year business plan.
Potential agri-entrepreneurs can contact Bill McCloskey, director of financial services, at (502) 564-4627 or visit the KAFC Web page at kafc.ky.gov.