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Red Lodge Pea Cannery

$26,000 Big Sky Trust Fund Grant, Montana Department of Commerce

$5,000 Department of Environmental Quality

$8,000 Private Investment (just for the feasibility study)

The Red Lodge Pea Cannery is a historic building that was built in 1911 as the Red Lodge Brewing Co. When prohibition came along, the brewery closed, and in 1926 it became the Red Lodge Canning Co. It was in operation for over 50 years as a cannery for peas and other vegetables but has since sat empty for decades. Beartooth RC&D wrote a Big Sky Trust Fund grant and obtained additional funding from DEQ to help fund a feasibility study to assess the reutilization of the historic industrial building. The new owners are working to renovate the building into a combined art studio, art gallery, coffee shop and bookstore.

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Pure Montana Meats

$200,000 ARPA Value- Added Grant

$200,000 Private Investment

Pure Montana Meats began processing and retailing their branded meats in Billings. They expanded their operation when they bought a meat plant in Miles City where their locally grown hogs and beef are processed. They ship to their plant outside of Billings for further processing and distribution.  Beartooth FADC assisted in securing funding through a $200,000 ARPA Value-Added Grant for their business expansion plans at their Billings-area facility.

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Oswald Farms

$250,000 USDA Value- Added Producer Grant

$250,000 Private Investment

Oswald Farms operates a generational ag operation that raises cattle and has them processed at a local USDA plant. Oswald Farms sells their own branded beef products to local restaurants and locally through social media outlets and word-of-mouth.  They have developed their own retail location, near the intersection of Highway 310 and 212, to sell their meat products & other local foods.  Beartooth FADC worked with USDA personnel and Oswald Farms in 2023 to successfully apply for a Value-Added Producer Grant for $250,000 to expand their direct-to-consumer beef business and expand their new retail store.

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Blue Creek Marbled Meat Co.

$300,000 Value-Added ARPA Grant

$2-3 million Private Investment

Blue Creek Marbled Meat Co. developed a $2-3 million state-inspected meat processing plant south of Billings.  Beartooth FADC assisted them in applying for and receiving a $300,000 Value-Added ARPA grant for construction and equipment costs. Their new plant is located next to their feedlot, which they are now expanding as well to include more pens for finishing beef. Blue Creek Marbled Meat Co. is now fully operational, adding great capacity to our region’s meat processing. Beartooth will continue to assist them with any grants that will assist them with this project.

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Stillwater County Industrial/Business Park

Public Funding:

$27,000 - Big Sky Trust Fund, Montana Department of Commerce

$25,000 - Stillwater County match

This Planning Grant project was for a feasibility study for future development of an industrial/business park in Stillwater County. Beartooth partnered with Stillwater County Economic Development and contractor KLJ. The feasibility study was concluded in December 2023, and the next steps for Stillwater County are in progress.

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Pioneer Meats / Meats of Montana

Public Funding:


Pioneer Meats is a Big Timber meat processor that Beartooth has worked with for several years. They recently added a meat processing/storefront location, Meats of Montana, that allows them to process wild meat at one location while expanding their beef, pork, bison and lamb processing at their main facility.  Beartooth FADC staff worked with Pioneer to utilize funding opportunities in completing their expansion in 2021-22. They received $50,000 from the Growth Through Ag grant and $150,000 from the ARPA grant for expansion of their new location on Main Street in Big Timber.

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Regional Conservation Partnership Program

Public Funding:

$600,000 - NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service)

$600,000 - Match funding

In 2013 a working group was formed to explore partnership opportunities to enhance sustainable agriculture in Southern Montana. The USDA Farm Bill created the RCPP (Regional Conservation Partnership Program) as a tool to invest public resources in improving conservation, restoration & sustainable use of our natural resources. Beartooth RC&D worked with Partners, including MillerCoors, to create the Yellowstone Regional Ag Sustainability Project, a mix of private industry and public partners. The EQIP funding model assists producers in adopting conservation practices and identifying BMP's for irrigated barley and beet rotations.

Read more about the project here.

Watch videos of Montana NRCS Conservation Success Stories here.

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