SPENCER – Two local farms will receive part of $20 million of disaster relief funding that was available to 347 farmers in Western and Central Massachusetts through the Natural Disaster Recovery (NDR) Program, according to State Sen. Peter J. Durant.
Governor Maura Healey’s Administration announced this funding on Monday, December 11th.
According to the Administration, to receive funding through the NDR Program, applicants were required to be a Massachusetts-based agricultural operation growing field crops, hay and forage crops, or produce crops. Eligible farms had to demonstrate that they suffered losses of greater than 15 percent of their total planted acreage during one of the 2023 natural disasters.
In Spencer, Center View Farm and Royal Crest Farm, LLC, were awarded funding.
Other nearby farms that will benefit from the program include Agronomy Farm Vineyard, LLC, in Oakham, Alta Vista Farm, LLC, Jordan Dairy Farms, Inc, and Schultz Farm in Rutland
Also receiving funds are Breezy Gardens, Leicester, Brookfield Orchards, Inc., Hickory Lane Farm, LLC, and Kettle Brook Farms, LLC, in North Brookfield, along with P & A Petruzzi Farms of East Brookfield.
All the farms receiving payments lost significant amounts of crops due to this past February’s deep freeze, a late May frost, and the catastrophic flooding in July.
“These funds come at a crucial time for farmers across the Worcester and Hampshire District and across Central Mass as a whole,” Durant said. “Thirty-six farms in my district will directly benefit from this much needed funding. I applaud the efforts of the Administration, and all involved for helping farmers get the relief they need.”
NDR Program will be distributed immediately in time for local farms to begin the work needed for next year’s growing and harvesting season.