Beginning Farmer Option

This program option allows beginning farmers who do not meet the current minimum requirements for any TAEP Application A program the opportunity to participate with reduced minimum requirements. The beginning farmer applicant must meet basic TAEP eligibility requirements (p. 6) unless otherwise specified below.

The purpose of this option is to help the beginning farmer applicant improve their operation with the goal of meeting minimum livestock/acreage requirements in the future. TAEP allows beginning farmers to participate in the Beginning Farmer Option for two consecutive years if they continue to meet Beginning Farmer Option requirements.

IMPORTANT: If a beginning farmer currently meets the minimum requirements for any TAEP Application A program, they are not eligible for the Beginning Farmer Option. However, they may apply for the program for which they are eligible.


Beginning Farmer Option – Second Consecutive Year

TAEP allows beginning farmers to participate in the Beginning Farmer Option for two consecutive years if they continue to meet the Beginning Farmer Option requirements except for being a first time TAEP applicant.

2021-2022 Approved Applicants

If you were approved for the 2021-2022 Beginning Farmer Option, you may be eligible for the 2022-2023 Beginning Farmer Option if you do not currently meet the minimum requirements for any TAEP Application A program and meet the 2022-2023 Beginning Farmer Option requirements (except for first time TAEP applicant).


Beginning Farmer Requirements

  • First time TAEP applicant – 2022 will be the first year the applicant has applied for TAEP cost share funding. Only one person from the farm operation may apply for TAEP Application A cost share.
  • Farming ten years or less – applicant must be actively involved in the production of crops and/or livestock at time of application and must have started their farming operation after January 1, 2012. Only one person from the farm operation may apply for TAEP Application A cost share.
  • Federal IRS Schedule F (Form 1040) Filing – applicant must have filed a Federal IRS Schedule F (Form 1040), Profit or Loss from Farming, within the last two years (2020 or 2021) unless the applicant began their operation in 2022. Applicant may be asked to submit a copy of their Schedule F prior to TAEP approval to verify their farming operation.
  • Reduced Minimum Requirements – the program minimum requirements are reduced for applicants qualifying for the TAEP Beginning Farmer Option.

Applicant is required to report their highest single day inventory of head of livestock and total acres in production during the last 12 months on their application.

2022 TAEP App A 10r
  • Master Certification Required – applicant must complete UT Farming Fundamentals or TSU New Farmer Academy prior to program reimbursement deadline.

Applicant who completes the education requirement will be reimbursed at 50% up to the program maximum. Standard 35% cost share is not available for the Beginning Farmer Option. If you are unable to complete the UT Farming Fundamentals course or attend the TSU New Farmer Academy, your project will not be funded.

Proof of UT Farming Fundamentals or TSU New Farmer Academy certification is required at time of reimbursement (not at time of application). Certificates issued 2019 or after will be accepted.

2022 TAEP App A 11r

* Applicant must meet at least one minimum program requirement at time of application.
** Approved applicant must complete one educational requirement prior to reimbursement.