Technical Assistance

Intro Food Systems Finance Course
November 6, 2019
Tampa, FL

Baker Tilly Virchow KrauseBNY MellonBricker & Eckler LLPBryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLPBusiness OregonCohnReznickFBT Project Finance Advisors LLCFifth Third BankFrost Brown Todd, LLCHawkins Delafield & Wood LLPIce Miller LLPKeyBanc Capital MarketsKutak Rock LLPMcCarter & English, LLPMcGuireWoodsMuniCap, Inc.NW Financial Group, LLCSB Friedman Development AdvisorsStern BrothersStifel NicolausU.S. BankWells Fargo SecuritiesZ. The Bond Buyer


The Intro Food Systems Finance WebCourse examines the development finance programs that sustain a local food system and how investments in that system can drive economic development on a broader scale. Topics covered include federal, state, and local sources of capital, stakeholders involved in the financing process, and case study examples that showcase the variety of financing programs.

This course will explore how bonds, tax credits, loan programs, foundation grants, and other financing tools can be used to support a local food system and encourage follow-on investment, small business development, and sustainable growth. In particular, this course will address the financing challenges associated with growing, processing, distributing, marketing, and selling food.

This course qualifies for the CDFA Training Institute's Development Finance Certified Professional (DFCP) Program. Start down the road to personal and professional advancement today.


Course Objectives

  • Discover how a local food system operates, including distribution, supply chain, and partners involved
  • Learn how local communities are financing farmers, grocers, restaurateurs, food artisans, and other food-related businesses
  • Hear about financing strategies to address food deserts, incubators, and co-ops
  • Understand the variety of sources of capital available to support a food system, including federal, state, and local programs
  • Gain a greater understanding of bond, tax credit, loan fund, and grant programs that can support a food system
  • Discuss innovative financing approaches being employed by communities across the country

Topics Covered

  • Understanding the local food system
  • Identifying partners and stakeholders in the food system
  • Sources of capital to support food-related businesses
  • Federal, state, and local financing programs
  • Foundation, non-profit, and community-based financing programs
  • Innovative financing approaches

Who Should Attend?

  • Economic Development Professionals
  • Community Development Professionals
  • Government and Nonprofit Finance Officers
  • Development Finance Agencies and Issuers
  • Attorneys
  • Accountants
  • Financial Advisors
  • Elected Officials
  • Policy Makers

Course Advisor

Toby Rittner Toby Rittner
Council of Development Finance Agencies
President & CEO
Toby Rittner is the President & CEO of Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA), a national association dedicated to the advancement of development finance concerns and interests. CDFA is comprised of the nation’s leading and most... (More)


Intro Food Systems Finance Course Agenda

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Wed 7:30 AM - 8:00 AM
Breakfast & Registration
Welcome participants, introduce CDFA and set the stage for the course.
Wed 8:00 AM - 8:30 AM
Welcome & Overview
Welcome to the Intro Food Systems Finance WebCourse. During this time, we will introduce CDFA, explain how to use the online software, and discuss the framework for the two-day course.
Wed 8:30 AM - 9:00 AM
What is a Food System?
The opeing session of the course will define a food system and provide an overview of the variety of ways that a food system can operate. Also included in the discussion is a look at the different types of businesses involved in a food system, including farmers, grocers, small businesses, food artisans, etc., and the partners involved in helping to finace a healthy food system.
Wed 9:00 AM - 10:15 AM
Identifying Stakeholders and Building Partnerships
A food system has many different stakeholders and partners represented from the government, private sector, and non-profit fields. This session will explain who these partners are and how they work together. Strategies will be presented for identifying and connecting these partners in your local region.
Wed 10:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Wed 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Innovative Financing Strategies for Food Systems
Food systems and food hubs are integrals parts of community infrastructure and sustainably financing them remains challenging at times. Infusion of public and private capital can grow and develop these complex systems. This session wil examine innovative approaches to financing these systems using a variety of capital sources through real-world examples of recent projects.
Wed 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Sources of Capital for Food Systems
A variety of development finance tools exist to support a food system, including federal, state, local, foundation, and non-profit sources. The session will briefly introduce each source of capital before they are presented in greater detail later in the course.
Wed 1:30 PM - 1:45 PM
Wed 1:45 PM - 3:00 PM
Federal Financing Programs
Several specilized programs are available through the federal agencies to help support a local food system. This session will present programs available through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), U.S. Department of the Treasury CDFI Fund, and other federal agencies.
Wed 3:00 PM - 3:15 PM
Wed 3:15 PM - 4:30 PM
Foundations and Program Related Investments
Foundations and Program Related Investments (PRI) have played an important role in many of the regions that are experiencing successful implementations of their food system. This session will explain the concept of PRI, types of foundations active in this area, how they are making an impact, and the characteristics of successfully funded projects.
Wed 4:30 PM


The Intro Food Systems Finance Course will be held at the Hilton Tampa Downtown, in the heart of the bustling downtown. The hotel is a short trolley ride from local attractions and moments from the city's best restaurants, shopping and entertainment.

Hilton Tampa Downtown
211 North Tampa Street
Tampa, FL 33602
Phone: 813-204-3000

Discounted Room Rate

CDFA has arranged a significantly reduced room rate of $189.00 (plus tax and service fees) per night for a standard room (single or double occupancy). Hotel rooms are available from November 4 to November 9 at the reduced rate if reservations are made before October 11. This rate is not guaranteed if reservations are made after the cut-off date or if the hotel is sold-out. Please reserve your room early.

Reserve Hotel Rooms Online


The Intro Food System Finance Course qualifies for the CDFA Training Institute's Development Finance Certified Professional (DFCP) Program. Start down the road to personal and professional advancement today.

Register before September 20, 2019 for Early-Bird Rates.

Early Bird Rates
CDFA Member: $400
Non-Member: $550
Standard Rates
CDFA Member: $450
Non-Member: $600