Capital Access Agricultural Loan Program

We are currently accepting applications. To apply, click here


Agriculture is the second largest industry in the Catskills, and a viable source of environmentally friendly, long-term economic growth and sustainability for the region. The Catskills also has the potential to be a major supplier of food for our own communities, as well as New York City and other downstate population centers. Indeed, numerous reports describe both the current and projected unmet food needs of the New York City Metropolitan area as well as the untapped potential for agribusiness growth in the Catskill region. 

We believe that right now there are unparalleled opportunities for farm businesses in the Catskill region. In 2011, we commissioned the Western Catskill Region Foodshed Research & Analysis Report, which through a combination of surveys, focus groups, and meetings with agricultural stakeholders, determined that the fastest way to have a positive impact on the agricultural economic sector would be to increase farm production and revenue. However, one of the biggest barriers preventing farmers from increasing production and expanding their businesses is a lack of access to capital.  In most cases, small farm businesses are frequently over leveraged, and are sometimes lacking financial acumen, which elevates the perception of risk among conventional lending sources.  In order to address this barrier to supporting sustainable agricultural economic growth in the Catskill region, Catskill Mountainkeeper has created the Capital Access Agricultural Loan Program.

Program Overview 

The Capital Access Agricultural Loan Program is a farmer-friendly program that provides loans with favorable rates and terms to qualifying farmers. The aim is to help increase farm production and annual sales as a means to creating measurable sustainable economic growth in the Catskill region. Loans are administered by Jeff Bank, with Catskill Mountainkeeper providing the loan guarantee.

Loans are offered in amounts ranging from $10,000 to $40,000, payable over 5 years and based on the specific needs of and opportunities available to applicants, at the discretion of Catskill Mountainkeeper’s Capital Access Agricultural Loan Program Evaluation Committee. All applicants are required to show a demonstrated increase in farm production and a positive impact on farm revenue.

Uses of Loan Proceeds 

The primary uses for the loan will include the purchase of land, animals, equipment, vehicles, buildings, and cash flow for orders in hand.  Other uses are subject to evaluation and approval by the Capital Access Agricultural Loan Program Evaluation Committee.

Eligibility Criteria

To be considered for a loan under this program, farmers must:

  1. Be located in the Catskill region, with preference given to Sullivan, Delaware and Otsego counties.
  2. Be in business and producing agricultural product for at least the last three consecutive years.
  3. Demonstrate a record of sustainable agricultural practices and business success.
  4. Have positive and actionable plans to expand operations and/or output.
  5. Be creditworthy, as evaluated by Jeff Bank.
  6. Be willing to undertake the pre- and post-business planning support Catskill Mountainkeeper provides as part of this program.

To Apply 

We are currently accepting applications. To apply, click here

Questions? We are happy to help, please call us at 845-439-1230 or email us at [email protected] with the subject line “Capital Access Loan Program.”  We will get back to you within two business days of your inquiry. 

Support for Capital Access Agricultural Loan Program education and outreach is provided by the New York Farm Viability Institute

Loans issued by Jeff Bank, NMLS ID#405318 

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