The Potato Marketing Improvement Fund program provides low-interest financing to help Maine potato growers and packers improve the quality and marketing of their potatoes. Potato Marketing Improvement funds may also be used to improve the economic viability of the potato industry.
Funds may be used for:
- New construction or improvements to storage and packing facilities.
- Purchase of packing, sizing, washing and drying equipment.
About the Potato Marketing Improvement Fund
The Potato Marketing Improvement Fund program was developed in conjunction with the Maine Potato Board and the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. The program is administered by FAME.
Generally, any person or business engaged in growing, processing or marketing potatoes in Maine. All potatoes stored or packed in Potato Marketing Improvement Fund-financed facilities must be produced in Maine.
New Facilities Loan Fund may be used for acquisition/improvement projects, or new construction of storages and/or centralized packing facilities and actuation of equipment.
Storage Retrofit Loan Program may be used for upgrading storages with energy efficiency improvements, and climate control equipment.
Support Facilities Loan Program may be used for construction and acquisition, or improvement of buildings and other structures which augment the production and/or storage of potatoes, or help meet food safety standards.
Value Added Loan Program may be used for construction, or for improvements of facilities and equipment to add value to farm production with a direct benefit to potato production.
|New Facilities||Storage Retrofit||Support Facilities||Value Added|
|Lending Values||45% of total project costs for projects up to $1,500,000*|
Minimum project cost of over $150,000
|55% of total project costs for projects up to $150,000||45% of total project costs for projects up to $300,000||45% of total project costs for projects up to $300,000; 50% if purchase or remodel of existing buildings|
|Interest Rate (set at time of loan commitment)||Federal prime rate but not greater than 5%||Federal prime rate but not greater than 5%||Federal prime rate but not greater than 5%||Federal prime rate but not greater than 5%|
|Term||Up to 25 years||Up to 10 years||Up to 10 years||Up to 10 years|
|Loan Origination Fee||1%||N/A||1%||1%|
* For projects over $1,500,000, 45% of first $1,500,000 of total project costs plus 25% of costs over $1,500,000.
** Borrower must inject at least 10% in private funds into the project except in the case of cooperative projects by two or more farmers; such demonstrated commitment of private funds shall total at least 5% of the total project.
*** Borrower must demonstrate a commitment of private funds of at least 5% of the total project cost.
See table above. Borrower is responsible for all loan closing costs.
Asset(s) being financed or other collateral, as required or available.
Guarantees of business principals owning 20% or more of the business, or 5% or more and receiving significant income from the business.
How to Apply
Request an application from and submit application to the Maine Potato Board.
If the project is deemed eligible, the Maine Potato Board will notify the applicant(s) and will forward the application to FAME for financial review.
Final approval is granted by the commissioner of the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.
Eligibility and Application Contact
Maine Potato Board
744 Main Street, Room #1
Presque Isle, ME 04769
Program Administration Contact
5 Community Drive
Augusta, ME 04330
207-623-3263 or 1-800-228-3734