Press Release

Press Release Baker-Polito Administration Awards $350,000 for Environmental Projects at Massachusetts Farms

For immediate release:
12/15/2017
  • Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
  • Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources

Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Awards $350,000 for Environmental Projects at Massachusetts Farms

Katie Gronendyke

BOSTONContinuing to advance environmental protection measures within the state’s agricultural sector, the Baker-Polito Administration today awarded 23 grants totaling $350,000 to Massachusetts farmers for the installation of conservation practices that prevent or mitigate direct impacts on water and air quality and ensure efficient water use. Through the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources’ (MDAR) Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program (AEEP), these grants will continue to advance environmental protection measures within the state’s agricultural sector and help farms across the Commonwealth fund various environmental projects, including the installation of automated irrigation systems and tailwater recovery for cranberry operations, manure storage for dairy farms, and irrigation for produce farms.

“The Commonwealth’s agricultural industry is a critical driver for community, regional, and state economies, and it is incredibly important that we work together to ensure local farms are able to implement environmentally conscious measures that will ensure generations of productive land use,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Farmers are true stewards of the land, and the Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program serves as a great tool to assist their efforts to protect the state’s natural resources.”

“This year’s AEEP Grants will provide long-lasting effects on 23 local farms to assist them in addressing operations that impact the Commonwealth’s environmental resources,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “Farms across Massachusetts receiving grants today have demonstrated their commitment to protecting the state’s environment, and we are glad to provide them with additional assistance as they continue to make great progress.”

Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program Grants fund projects that improve water quality, promote water conservation, and/or improve air quality. Selected farmers are reimbursed for the approved costs of materials and labor up to $25,000. Additionally, farms must be actively devoted to agricultural or horticultural use, and projects that address significant resource concerns are more likely to receive AEEP funding.

“For hundreds of years Massachusetts has supported its local farmers, who provide invaluable crops and products to our dinner tables every day, and the Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program Grants is another great example of the Baker-Polito Administration’s dedication to supporting and improving farming operations,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. “The AEEP Grants will continue to be an important tool as we work together to ensure the sustainability of our state’s agricultural industry while also protecting our natural resources.”

AEEP is one of several programs within MDAR’s Division of Agricultural Conservation and Technical Assistance (DACTA), whose mission is to advance the conservation and utilization of agricultural resources through preservation, environmental stewardship, technology, technical assistance, and education in order to enhance the viability of agricultural enterprises and safeguard natural resources. AEEP has funded over 500 projects statewide since 1999, providing growers and producers over $6 million dollars to help address environmental concerns on their farms.

“The Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program continues to be a key source of funding for Massachusetts farmers to address environmental concerns on their farms,” said MDAR Commissioner John Lebeaux. “We are immensely proud of the improvements the program has helped our famers make to the environment and congratulate all the recipients.”

The following farms received AEEP Grants:

Farm Name

Site City

County

Project Type

Amount Awarded

Alden Farms

Bourne

Barnstable

Automated Irrigation System

$6,600

Maple Shade Farm, Inc.

Sheffield

Berkshire

Heavy Use Area Upgrades

$25,000

Almeida Farms

Rehoboth

Bristol

Manure Storage

$16,400

Piney Wood Cranberry Co. Inc.

Plymouth

Plymouth

Lift Pump

$15,750

2 Friends Farm

Attleboro

Bristol

Ebb & Flow Bench System

$13,600

D&D Harju Cranberries, LLC

Middleboro

Plymouth

Lift Pump

$17,500

Harju Bog Management, Inc.

Halifax

Plymouth

Lift Pump

$17,500

Harju Brothers Cranberry, Inc.

North Carver

Plymouth

Automated Irrigation

$3,600

Pride of Carver Cranberry Limited Partnership

Carver

Plymouth

(2) Automated Irrigation Systems

$10,500

Johnson Brothers Cranberries, LLC

Carver

Plymouth

Four Flumes

$9,100

North Country Harvest

Westfield

Hampden

Irrigation Pump

$18,000

Korpinen Bog

Middleboro

Plymouth

Tailwater Recovery

$20,000

Medico Cranberry

Carver

Plymouth

Lift Pump

$20,000

Mayval Farm

Westhampton

Hampshire

No Till Equipment

$22,500

Edgewood Bogs, LLC

Carver

Plymouth

Lift Pump

$20,000

Stillman Dairy Farm

Lunenburg

Worcester

Manure Pump

$13,500

Black Squirrel, LLC

Amherst

Hampshire

Irrigation

$20,000

Harvard Alpaca Ranch

Harvard

Worcester

Manure Pad; Fencing; Waterers

$7,000

Phoenix Fruit Farm

Belchertown

Hampshire

Well/Drip Irrigation

$11,700

Red Fire Farm

Granby

Franklin

Irrigation

$20,000

GSW Cranberries, Inc.

Carver

Plymouth

Lift Pump

$14,400

Warner Farm, LLC

Sunderland

Franklin

Well/Drip Irrigation

$19,500

Federal Furnace Cranberry

Carver

Plymouth

Flume

$7,850

“Farmers are the stewards of our environment here in the Commonwealth, working day in and day out with our natural world,” said State Representative William Pignatelli (D-Lenox), House Chair of the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture. “Recognizing their hard work through the AEEP grant program shows our agricultural industry that the Baker-Polito Administration through MDAR supports the work done on our farmlands to protect water conservation and air and water quality. I want to extend my congratulations to Maple Shade Farm located in my district, as well as to all the farms receiving AEEP grants.”

“MDAR’s support for Maple Shade Farm will help Morven Allen invest in upgrades which will promote efficiency for his organic operation in Sheffield,” said State Senator Adam G. Hinds (D-Pittsfield). “The Commonwealth’s investment today helps to sustain small businesses and promote the agricultural sector of our economy, which is so important in western Massachusetts.”

“Agricultural operations are an integral part of my District and protecting our valuable natural resources is important to the people I represent,” said State Representative Susan Gifford (R-Wareham). “These AEEP grants provide much needed funding to sustain our farms while safeguarding the environment.”

“Farmers do incredibly important work for our state and its residents,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Marc R. Pacheco (D-Taunton), founding chair of the Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change. “Environmental conservation is imperative for the viability of Massachusetts agriculture and the long-term success of farms across our Commonwealth. These farms, including nine in my own district, are committed to improving air quality and conserving water, and they deserve our support. I look forward to seeing the fruits of their labor every year.”

For further information regarding AEEP Grants and other funding programs, please visit the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources webpage.

 

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Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Awards $350,000 for Environmental Projects at Massachusetts Farms

Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs 

The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs seeks to protect, preserve, and enhance the Commonwealth’s environmental resources while ensuring a clean energy future for the state’s residents. Through the stewardship of open space, protection of environmental resources, and enhancement of clean energy, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs works tirelessly to make Massachusetts a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family.

Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources 

The Department’s mission is to help keep the Massachusetts’ food supply safe and secure, and to work to keep Massachusetts agriculture economically and environmentally sound.

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