SARE is a program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute for Food and Agriculture that provides competitive grants and educational materials. Our grants programs are conducted cooperatively by farmers, ranchers, researchers, and ag professionals to advance farm and ranch systems that are profitable, environmentally sound, and good for communities.
The SARE grant program mission is to advance innovations that improve profitability, stewardship, and quality of life in American agriculture by investing in groundbreaking research and education. To achieve that, Western SARE believes that our programs must include the involvement of agricultural producers from inception to finish, and therefore we require producer involvement in the planning, design, implementation, and educational outreach of any funded project.
Western SARE Goals
• Promote good stewardship of the nation’s natural resources by providing site-specific, regional, and profitable sustainable farming and ranching methods that strengthen agricultural competitiveness; satisfy human food and fiber needs; maintain and enhance the quality and productivity of soil; conserve soil,
water, energy, natural resources, and fish and wildlife habitat; and maintain and improve the quality of surface and ground water.
• Enhance the quality of life of farmers and ranchers and ensure the viability of rural communities, for example, by increasing income and employment, especially profitable self-employment and innovative marketing opportunities in agricultural and rural communities.
• Protect the health and safety of those involved in food and farm systems by reducing, where feasible and practical, the use of toxic materials in agricultural production, and by optimizing on-farm resources and integrating, where appropriate, biological cycles and controls.
• Promote crop, livestock, and enterprise diversification.
• Examine the regional, economic, social, and environmental implications of adopting sustainable agriculture practices and systems.
Western SARE serves 13 states and 4 protectorates:
Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Colorado, Guam, Hawaii, Federated States of Micronesia, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Northern Marianas Islands, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
Western SARE is hosted by Montana State University. The Professional Development Program is hosted by the University of Wyoming. The program is led by an Administrative Council who, by working with Western SARE Regional Coordinator and staff in Montana, Wyoming, and California, sets guidelines, develops calls for proposals, and establishes project priorities. The council tries to ensure that funded projects have the appropriate balance and diversity that can represent the region's wide-ranging geography and subject matter. The PDP program works with State Coordinators.
Rigorous Project Review
Projects are funded based on their merits and potential for achievement as gauged by a rigorous, competitive review process. The review is overseen by the Western SARE Administrative Council with support from technical reviewers who are highly skilled and knowledgeable in their fields. All funded projects provide reports that are publicly available in our database.