College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences

Small Farmer of the Year Application Requirements

The Small Farmer of the Year award is a special honor given to a North Carolina small farmer who is an inspiration to other small farmers. The Small Farmer of the Year award recognizes a small farmer who is  a/an: 

  • Innovator in livestock and/or crop production and marketing.
  • Leader, involved in contributing time and other resources to build their community.
  • Steward of the environment who protects and enhances natural resources.
  • Wise businessperson running a farm business in an entrepreneurial manner.

Applicant eligibility requirements:

The award is given to a North Carolina small farmer who meets the following eligibility criteria:

  • Generates 50 percent or more of his or her gross income from farming.
  • Earned an average (over the last three years) annual gross farm income of less than $250,000 .
  • Operates a farm wherein the nominee or a family member provides general management for the business.
  • Has not previously received the Small Farmer of the Year award.

Nomination requirements:

  • An N.C. Cooperative Extension (NCCE) county-based employee must provide input on the nomination form. Nominations can come from an agricultural professional not employed by NCCE; however, it is important for an NCCE county-based employee to be aware that a nomination is being submitted and provide supporting signatures on the nomination form.
  • The nominee must have a positive working relationship with the NCCE county center.
  • The Small Farmer of the Year must work with the local planning committee and NCCE county center to plan a Small Farms Week educational event the following year.
  • The nomination form must be signed by the nominator, nominee and NCCE county director.

All information provided will remain confidential and will not be returned to sender. If a nominee is chosen as the Small Farmer of the Year, select information may be used for educational and promotional purposes.

Application and supporting materials details:

  • All nominations and supporting materials must be received or postmarked by January 19, 2024.
  • Late and/or incomplete applications will not be considered.
Please make copies of your completed application and supporting materials. The awards committee is not responsible for lost applications or supporting materials. Documents will not be returned to the sender.