Beginning Farmer Loan Program

The Colorado Agricultural Development Authority (CADA) loan program is known as the Beginning Farmer Program.

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Program Overview

The Colorado Agricultural Development Authority (CADA) loan program is the Beginning Farmer Program. The program involves a three-way transaction between the lender, the borrower, and CADA. CADA issues a tax-exempt bond to the lender, and all interest paid by the borrower is tax-exempt. The result is an interest rate to the borrower below commercial rates.

Because interest paid to the lender under this program is tax-exempt, the lender should be willing to charge interest rates substantially below commercial rates.

Program Details
Sunset and Wheat Field

Photo taken by Tim Atkinson

What you need to know about the Beginning Farmer Program

The borrower must be a Beginning Farmer who has never owned farmland equal to or greater than 30 percent of the median county farm acreage.

  • Funds can only be used to purchase agricultural land and depreciable agricultural property.
  • The maximum that can be borrowed is $649,400.
  • The borrower must be approved by a lender.
  • Loans are not guaranteed by the government or by CADA.
  • The borrower and lender must mutually agree upon the loan terms (i.e., interest rate, length of loan).
  • Interest rates can be either fixed or floating.
  • CADA must approve loan applications within 60 days of any payments made on the project.
  • No portion of the loan may be used for a personal residence.
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in bonds to assist over 350 beginning farmers.


in bonds to help establish four agricultural processing facilities in Colorado


for four agricultural sewage facility bonds totaling $20.5 million.