ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10)-Grants of up to $50,000 are available for agricultural businesses that have been experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic. Empire State Development (ESD) will be holding a webinar for businesses interested in applying for the grant program.

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard Ball is encouraging agriculture businesses to apply. Small businesses with revenues up to $2.5 million could be eligible to receive grant money.

“There are so many agribusinesses that are still feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and facing many challenges after having lost markets at schools and restaurants,” Ball said. “This grant program provides an opportunity for our food and beverage producers, our farmers, and our growers to access some much-needed capital to help recover their losses and rebuild their businesses.”

The grant can be used to cover payroll, commercial rent, or mortgage payments for properties in New York. It can also be used to pay school or property taxes, insurance, utility bills, and personal protective equipment. More information about what expenses qualify for the grant can be found on the ESD website.

“New York’s food and agricultural industry is vital to the state’s economic recovery and ensuring that our agribusinesses are moving forward and thriving is crucial for the state’s economic post-pandemic progress,” said ESD Acting Commissioner, President & CEO-designate Hope Knight. “We encourage eligible agribusinesses to apply for these grants, which will help us all move forward.”

The webinar is being held Monday, December 13 at 11 a.m. An overview of the program, level of funding, and how to apply will all be discussed during the webinar. Participants will have to fill out a brief form to access the meeting.