828-649-5115  /  info@energycap.org  

TRACTOR Food & Farms Project

TRACTOR Food & Farms Project

TRACTOR, founded in 2012, is a Non-Profit organization located in Burnsville, NC and serves seven Western North Carolina counties as well as a few farms in East Tennessee. TRACTOR currently offers many services to its local growers like washing stations, packaging equipment, cold storage, and rental equipment for the planting and harvesting of the crops.

Sunburst Chef & Farmer

Sunburst Chef & Farmer

As most people already know, local food is one of the main components to a healthy lifestyle. Over the last decade alone, local farmers markets, restaurants, and supermarkets that keep local produce on their shelves have gained popularity with not only the locals, but also with those who enjoy visiting our mountains on their weekend getaways. Chances are, if you make a trip to Cashiers Farmers Market, Biltmore Village Inn, or Mother Earth Produce, you will probably have something on your plate or in your shopping bag that was produced at Sunburst Chef and Farmer.

Cold Mountain Nursery Heater Project

Cold Mountain Nursery Heater Project

This operation all started on a smaller scale back in the 1960’s when Steve, former horticulture instructor at HCC began growing various types of trees. When his son Josh graduated from NC State University with a degree in horticulture, he began building what is now Cold Mountain Nursery. The nursery originally just sold wholesale to various agricultural businesses in the area but soon became a favorite among locals. Now, Cold Mountain Nursery sells to not only businesses but to the public as well.

Danny Barrett's Ten Acre Farm

Danny Barrett's Ten Acre Farm

In the small community of Bethel, just outside of Canton, NC, there are several large tracts of land that are home to many mountain farms. Many have been passed down from generation to generation, just like Danny Barrett’s farm has. Barrett is the owner and operator of Ten Acre Farms, located just off Lake Logan Road. This farm is a century farm, meaning that the land has been utilized for one hundred years or more.

Small Farm in Elkin Awarded Energy Grant

Carolina Heritage Vineyards in Elkin has been awarded a cost-share grant for an innovative on-farm energy project through the WNC Energy Cost-share Assistance Program (energyCAP). The award is funded exclusively by NC Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. WNC energyCAP is a nonprofit project designed to help WNC farms and rural small businesses get grant funding for renewable energy systems and energy efficiency upgrades to their operation through a variety of different sources. The project is administered in part by Blue Ridge Resource Conservation & Development Council, in partnership with three other RC&D Councils that cover the western counties of NC.

The project will provide space heating and hot water for all areas of the winery’s operation using an innovative combination of two kinds of renewable energy. A wood gasification boiler and a rooftop solar hot water collection system will work together to meet 100% of the demand. The system is designed to rely more on wood in the winter, and more on solar in the summer. The system will help Carolina Heritage avoid nearly $2,000 in annual energy costs.

This program still has funding available, and the next deadline is October 31st, 2017. If you would like to learn more about this energy grant and others, please contact Alex Arnold, the project coordinator, at alex@energycap.org or (828) 649-5115, or visit www.energycap.org.

McDowell and Transylvania County Small Farms Awarded Energy Grants

Two area small farms have been awarded cost-share grants for on-farm energy projects through the WNC Energy Cost-share Assistance Program (energyCAP). The award is funded exclusively by NC Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. WNC energyCAP is a nonprofit project designed to help WNC farms and rural small businesses get grant funding for renewable energy systems and energy efficiency upgrades to their operation through a variety of different sources . The project is administered by Mountain Valleys Resource Conservation & Development Council, in partnership with three other RC&D Councils that cover the western counties of NC.

The winners of Spring 2017 Small Farm Energy Grants include Sleight Family Farm in McDowell County, Colonial Acres Nursery in Transylvania County, and five other farms elsewhere in WNC. Sleight Family Farm has proposed an 8 KW solar system to power an indoor microgreen growing system, greenhouse fans, and other farm electric usage. Colonial Acres Nursery plans to install an innovative wood boiler system to provide underground heat for plant propagation using on-site wood waste.

This program still has funding available, and the next deadline is October 31st, 2017. If you would like to learn more about this energy grant and others, please contact Alex Arnold, the project coordinator, at alex@energycap.org or (828) 649-5115, or visit www.energycap.org.

Cherokee and Clay County Small Farms Awarded Energy Grants

Five small farms in Clay and Cherokee Counties have been awarded cost-share grants for solar PV renewable energy systems through the WNC Energy Cost-share Assistance Program (energyCAP). The award is funded exclusively by NC Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. WNC energyCAP is a nonprofit project designed to help WNC farms and rural small businesses get grant funding for renewable energy systems and energy efficiency upgrades to their operation through a number of different sources. The project is administered in part by Southwestern Resource Conservation & Development Council, in partnership with three other RC&D Councils that cover the western counties of NC.

The winners of Spring 2017 Small Farm Energy Grants include River’s Edge Farm, Two Feathers Farm, and Hanging Dog Valley Nursery in Cherokee County, Hyatt Farm and Groves Farm in Clay County, and three other farms elsewhere in WNC.

This program still has funding available, and the next deadline is October 31st, 2017. If you would like to learn more about this energy grant and others, please contact Alex Arnold, the project coordinator, at alex@energycap.org or (828) 649-5115, or visit www.energycap.org.