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Eligibility Requirements and Cost Share Options


    1. Be a citizen of the United States of America and/or lawfully present in the United States.
    2. Be an individual Tennessee resident operating a farm located in Tennessee.
    3. Be at least 18 years old on application date.
    4. Meet minimum livestock/acreage requirements for each program applied.
      • Head of livestock = maximum number of single type, regardless of sex or age, at one time during the last 12 months.
    5. Have filed a Federal IRS Schedule F (Form 1040), Profit or Loss from Farming, within the last two years (2013 or 2014).
      • Applicant will not be required to submit a copy of their Schedule F at the time of application. However, applicant
        may be asked to submit a copy of their Schedule F prior to TAEP approval to verify their farming operation.
    6. Register their premise if applicant has livestock on their operation.
      • Applicant name must match contact name (primary or alternate) listed on premises account to be eligible.
      • The premises account number is tied to the individual.
      • The premises id number is tied to the farm address.
      • An individual can have multiple premises id numbers if they have multiple farm locations.
      • The farm address listed on the cost share application must match the address for the premises id listed on the application.
      • Premises registration forms and instructions are available from TDA by calling 615-837-5120 or at www.tn.gov/taep
    7. Have appropriate certification based on type of producer and cost share program.
      • BEEF AND DAIRY CATTLE must have current Beef Quality Assurance Certification (BQA) at time of application.
        • BQA certifications must be renewed every three years and CURRENT at time of application.
        • BQA is a two-hour educational course on cattle management and care sponsored by the Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association
          (TCA). Contact TCA for additional information on BQA classes at 615-896-2333, info@tncattle.org, www.tncattle.org or your
          local UT Extension office, utextension.tennessee.edu.
        • Online BQA courses are eligible. A copy of online BQA certificate must be submitted with application.
      • SWINE must have current Pork Quality Assurance Plus Certification (PQA) at time of application.
        • PQA Plus is a two-hour educational course on swine management and care sponsored by the Tennessee Pork Producers
          Association (TPPA). PQA certifications must be renewed every three years and CURRENT at time of application. Contact
          TPPA for additional information on PQA Plus classes at 615-274-6533 or porkpromotn@tds.net.
      • DAIRY (cattle, goats and sheep) must be permitted by TDA to be eligible as a dairy at time of application.
        • Contact TDA Consumer and Industry Services, Food and Dairy Division, at 615-837-5193, for permit information.
      • IMPORTANT
        • Certifications, permits and other priority requirements as specified by program must be completed by the applicant. No substitutions allowed. This applies to: BQA, PQA, dairy permit, premises registration, master producer certifications, and Producer Diversification requirements.

Cost Share Options


  1. 35% Cost Share - Standard Producer
    • Each program offers cost share at this level.

  2. 50% Cost Share - Master Producer
    Genetics, Livestock Equipment, Livestock Working Facility Cover, Hay Storage, Livestock Feed Storage, Grain Storage
    • Applicants approved for cost share must complete a course, related to their operation, prior to the program reimbursement deadline to be eligible for 50% cost share.
    • Certificates are submitted with reimbursement request.
    • The certificate must be in the name of the applicant approved for cost share. No substitutions allowed.
    • Applicants that have not completed the appropriate course by reimbursement deadline will be eligible for the standard cost share of 35%.
    • Eligible Courses
      • Master Beef Producer (MBP)
      • Advanced Master Beef Producer (AMBP)
      • Master Meat Goat Producer (MMGP)
      • Advanced Master Meat Goat Producer (AMMGP)
      • Master Dairy Producer (MDP) – two or more modules per program year
        The MDP program has replaced TQMI program. TQMI certificates are no longer eligible.
    • Eligibility By Program
      • Genetics - Cattle or goats/sheep producers taking MBP, AMBP, MMGP, AMMGP, MDP
      • Livestock Equipment - Cattle or goats/sheep producers taking MBP, AMBP, MMGP, AMMGP, MDP
      • Livestock Working Facility Cover - Cattle or goats/sheep producers taking MBP, AMBP, MMGP, AMMGP, MDP
      • Hay Storage - Cattle, goats/sheep, or hay producers taking MBP, AMBP, MMGP, AMMGP, MDP
      • Livestock Feed Storage - Cattle or goats/sheep producers taking MBP, AMBP, MMGP, AMMGP, MDP
      • Grain Storage - Not available

    Producer Diversification

    • Applicants must attend certain events related to their operation or obtain required certification
    • Applicants must have participated in events from 2012 - 2015
    • All certifications must be completed by the applicant prior to the reimbursement deadline
    • Eligible Course
      • Tennessee Agritourism Conference
      • Agritourism Workshop
      • Direct Marketing Sense Course
      • Direct Marketing Workshop
      • GAP Food Safety Workshop
      • Good Ag Practices (GAP) Certification
      • Tennessee Horticultural Expo
      • UT BeeMaster Course
      • UT Master Nursery Course
      • UT USDA Organic Certification

Find your local UT/TSU Extension office and inquire about educational course offerings by visiting https://extension.tennessee.edu/Pages/default.aspx or http://www.tnstate.edu/extension/


TDA offers partial scholarships for participation in UT/TSU Extension’s MBP, MMGP, MBee and/or TQMI programs. Funding is paid directly to UT.

  • Master Beef Producer Scholarship - $100
  • Master Meat Goat Producer Scholarship - $100
  • BeeMaster Scholarship - $50
  • TQMI Module - $40 per session