For Immediate Release

Contact: Tristan Noyes
Maine Grain Alliance
Phone: 207.272.6844

The Maine Grain Alliance Awards $15,350 to 16 Grain-based Businesses in Maine

SKOWHEGAN, MAINE (December 15, 2022) ̶  The Maine Grain Alliance (MGA) is thrilled to announce the recipients of latest round of Technical Assistance Grants to grain-based organizations across Maine. This year farms, bakeries, mills, and food manufacturers were among those awarded grant funds.

The MGA has awarded sixteen grain-based businesses a total of $15,350. It is the largest round of the awards given through the Technical Assistance Grant Program to date.

“The MGA is incredibly proud to support hardworking entrepreneurs who create new opportunities inside our regional grain economy,” notes Tristan Noyes, executive director of the Maine Grain Alliance. “We hear from awardees that our grants give them the courage to explore areas for new growth and opportunity.“

The MGA awards mini-grants of $250 – $1,000 to fund need-based technical assistance and equipment across a variety of grain-based businesses and organizations in Maine. The Maine Grain Alliance is especially interested in assisting participants, presenters, panelists, work-study students, and scholarship recipients of the Kneading Conference which has been held annually since 2007.

Heather Kerner is the founder of the The Good Crust, a pizza dough manufacturer who uses 100% Maine grains in her dough. She shares that the support of the Maine Grain Alliance Technical Assistance Program has been critical to the launch of her business. "Without MGA's assistance of initial funding to purchase a key piece of equipment, I would not have been able to scale my business so quickly, " shared Heather.

Barak Olins of Zu Bakery, a previous awardee, shared that though the MGA grant made up approximately I/5th of the total cost needed for a dough divider and its installation, it was the impetus that he needed to invest in the equipment. "I think small bakeries often spend years debating whether to spend money, to invest in equipment or other improvements. To have that decision accelerated by receiving and committing to the money from MGA was indispensable."

Kristina Kalolo, previously the markets manager of Liberation Farms, stated that a grant in support of post-harvest corn handling helped to open a door to the local grain economy. She continued, "Our organization is run by and for the Somali Bantu refugee community in Lewiston. This grant has allowed our community to produce storable corn grain for both consumption and sale as a culturally appropriate food source and culturally familiar income stream."

Sawing wood for corn drying tables at Liberation Farms

Constructing corn drying tables at Liberation Farms

The latest round of grants provided funding baking equipment, post-harvest grain handling equipment, purchase of a wood-fired oven, packaging needs, educational media placement, website refurbishment, branding needs, purchase and shipping of grain mills, and refrigeration infrastructure. 

The Maine Grain Alliance Technical Assistance Grant Program is made possible by the generous support of Skowhegan Savings Bank, Franklin Savings Bank, and Allagash Brewing Company.

The following businesses and organizations received grant funding during our latest round:

  • Night Moves Bread
  • Liberation Farms
  • Uproot Pie Company
  • The Good Crust
  • Maine Grains
  • Crystal Spring Farm
  • B&T Baked Goods
  • The Bankery
  • Afterglow Ice Cream
  • Spark Bagel
  • McLaughlin Family Farms, LLC
  • Sheepscot General Store
  • Zu Bakery
  • Head Tide Oven
  • MePowered Pastries
  • Tummy Peace Brown Bread Bakery
About the Maine Grain Alliance

The Maine Grain Alliance (MGA) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded in 2010 with the mission to inspire and empower people who are building local grain economies. The organization creates connections and shares grain traditions and innovations from earth to table. MGA promotes beneficial uses for of grain for good health, food independence, and purposeful jobs within viable communities. The Alliance connects people and supports the economic, environmental, and nutritional importance for establishing regional grain economies. For more information, please visit

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Maine Grain Alliance | P.O. Box 1140, Skowhegan, ME 04976 |
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