Honey Producer Grant Information

Info below is from the TN Department of Agriculture TAEP website.

Who is a Honey Bee Producer?

For the purposes of TAEP, an eligible Honey Bee producer must meet the minimum requirements of beekeeping experience and number of existing colonies as outlined below in Honey Bee Applicant Requirements.

Honey Bee Applicant Requirements

• Minimum experience of five years and current ownership of at least fifteen colonies is required to participate. 
• Minimum experience of five years and current ownership of at least thirty existing colonies is required to request cost share for construction of a TDA licensed and inspected Honey Processing Facility.
• Applicants must report experience and number of hives in application proposal to be eligible.

– If the applicant has assisted other beekeepers and mentors in working directly with bees, he or she may count this hands-on experience toward the requirements. The applicant must list the beekeeper’s name, contact information, and length of time spent assisting this beekeeper for this experience to be considered.

– There is not a year requirement for ownership of hives but applicants must own required number of hives at time of application.

Consumer & Industry Services (Regulatory):
• Apiaries must be registered with the State of Tennessee by the time of the application period (October 1-7, 2022). Contact TDA State Apiarist at 615-837-5342 for more information.
• If you pack or sell more than 150 gallons of honey per year, you must be licensed and inspected by the State of Tennessee as a food manufacturing facility. Contact TDA Consumer & Industry Services at 615-837-5153 for more information.

Honey Bee Producer Cost Share Opportunities

Standard Producer – 35% Cost Share – $12,000 Reimbursement Maximum

All approved applicants with Honey Bee projects are eligible for 35% cost share. There are no special requirements for 35% cost share.

Master Producer – 50% Cost Share – $12,000 Reimbursement Maximum

To be eligible for 50% cost share, approved applicant must complete special requirements prior to the program reimbursement request deadline of August 1, 2023. The name registered for the special requirement must be the same name as the individual applying for cost share funding.

Special Requirements for 50% Cost Share

Honey Bee Special Requirements – applicant must complete one (1) of the following educational courses to qualify for 50%

— UT Master Beekeeping (preferred)
— UT Master Farm Manager
— UT Master Farm Health & Wellness
— TSU New Farmer Academy

• Applicant must have participated in special requirements from 2019 – 2023.

• Certificate must be in the name of the applicant applying for cost share funding.

• Applicants are encouraged to participate in the UT Master Beekeeping course before taking other educational courses.

• Visit epp.tennessee.edu/masterbee/ for more information about the UT Master Beekeeping.

What Honey Bee Projects Qualify for TAEP?

The proposed activity must encompass quality expansion or improvement of pollination or honey production. The eligible categories are: Apiary expansion, honey processing equipment, pollination services and honey processing facility.

Competitive Projects — Honey Bee:

• Priority is given to long-term projects that focus on improving or increasing production of honey, bees, or hive related products.
• Marketing projects that are long-term in nature are allowed but are not considered as competitive as those involving production.
• Only complete applications that include sufficient information will be considered for evaluation.

Approved applicants will receive a revised budget with reimbursement documentation. The revised budget indicates approved items per committee review, cost share allocation amount, and status of special requirement participation. All committee decisions are final.

Eligible Honey Bee Items

Ineligible Honey Bee Items

Email producer.diversification@tn.gov for additional information.