Canola Feasibility Study, Fiber Processing Facility Expansion Among Seventeen Agricultural Investments Approved

More than $1.5 million invested in Kentucky Agricultural Development Funds

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 17, 2017) –The Kentucky Agricultural Development Board approved $1,599,412 for 17 agricultural diversification and rural development projects and programs across the Commonwealth at its monthly board meeting.

Hemp Support

Kentucky Hemp Research Foundation Inc. was approved for $2,000 in Floyd County funds. The funds will be used to purchase a dual harvester. For more information about this project, contact Annie Rouse at (859) 229-6427 or

Fiber Processing Facility Expansion

Sunstrand, LLC was approved for $381,500 in State and County funds. The funds will be used to expand Sunstrand’s Louisville-based natural fiber manufacturing facility. For more information on this project, contact Trey Riddle at (502) 415-8505 or

Canola Feasibility Study

The Hopkinsville Elevator Company, Inc. was approved for $12,000 in Christian and Todd County funds. The funds will be used to conduct a feasibility study on merchandising and processing canola. For more information on this project, contact Ben Westerfield at (270) 886-5191

Automated Milking System

Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) was approved for $179,373 in State funds. The funds will be used to install an automated milking system on the EKU working dairy farm for demonstration, education and research purposes. For more information on this project, contact Dr. John Settimi at (859) 622-2237 or

Business Valuation

KY Agricultural Opportunities, Inc. (KAO), a producer-owned cooperative, was approved for $50,000 in State funds. The funds will be used to complete a comprehensive valuation of the Bluegrass Livestock Marketing Group. For more information on this project, contact Troy Rankin at (859) 983-5304 or

On-Farm Investments

Six County Agricultural Investment Programs (CAIP) were approved by the board totaling $799,766 for Breckinridge ($300,000), Kenton ($81,354), Johnson ($24,250), Madison ($256,162), Ohio ($38,000) and Rowan ($100,000) counties. CAIP offers 10 investment areas that give Kentucky agricultural producers the ability to increase net farm income, add value to their products and diversify their operation. CAIP benefits and enhances agriculture across the state by stimulating markets for Kentucky agricultural products.

In addition to these new approvals, an additional $124,455 was approved to enhance existing CAIPs in Franklin ($74,455) and Jessamine ($50,000) counties.

Environmental Stewardship

The Deceased Farm Animal Removal Program serves as a measure to facilitate the coordination of environmentally sound and cost effective disposal of deceased livestock for Kentucky producers. One Deceased Farm Animal Removal Program totaling $7,500 was approved by the board for Madison County.

Shared-use Equipment Program

The Shared-use Equipment Program assists broad-based community organizations with the purchase of farm equipment. The equipment purchased is made available for producer use in a specific county on a leased basis. Two Shared-use Equipment Programs were approved for Carter ($5,687), Estill ($15,632) and LaRue ($21,499) counties totaling $42,818.


Emily Milam

Commonwealth of Kentucky
Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy


Great strides continue being made toward lessening Kentucky’s dependence on tobacco production while revitalizing the farm economy by investing a portion of Kentucky’s Master Settlement Agreement Funds into the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund. 

To date, Kentucky has invested more than $500 million in an array of county, regional and state projects designed to increase net farm income and create sustainable new farm-based business enterprises. These funding approvals, made possible by the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund, represent just a few of the more than 5,400 projects approved, since the inception of the program in January 2001.

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