Brynik Farms awarded grant

Published 9:01 am Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Brynik Farms, of Prince Edward County, has received a $19,687 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Virginia Rural Development Office for installing renewable energy systems to help reduce energy costs.

According to the USDA press release, the farm was one of two agricultural producers to receive the grant; four rural Virginia businesses also received grant money.

Overall, the grants totaled $65,921, according to the release.

“A 31.5 (kilowatt) solar PV system will be installed (at Brynik Farms) to provide electricity to the farming operation that will displace 100 percent of their energy usage,” officials said in the release.

“This program is designed to help agricultural producers and rural small businesses reduce energy costs and consumption and help meet the nation’s critical energy needs,” said Janice Stroud-Bickes, Virginia acting state director for USDA Rural Development.

The release said USDA Rural Development was awarding the grants through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).

According to the release, the REAP program was started to help small, rural businesses and agricultural producers by conducting and promoting energy audits and providing renewable energy development assistance.

“Funds may be used for energy audits, renewable energy technical assistance and renewable energy site assessments,” USDA officials said.

The release said eligible project costs include salaries and travel expenses directly related to conducting energy audits or renewable energy development assistance.

Funding of each award is contingent upon the recipient meeting the terms of the grant agreement, according to the release.