White Paper 1: Food Systems & Development Finance
Many food-related initiatives, projects, and businesses have lacked sufficient resources and financing for economic and community development, largely because the food system as a whole has not been formally defined as an asset class. As the first part of a series, CDFA makes the case for a clear definition of the food system that directs development finance to food-related activity.
KY Agricultural Finance Corp. Approved $2.4M in Ag Loans
The Kentucky Agricultural Finance Corp. has approved $2,450,830 in agricultural loans for projects in the Commonwealth. The BFLP is designed to assist individuals with some farming experience who desire to develop, expand or buy into a farming operation. Beginning farmers may qualify for financing for a variety of food and agricultural purposes.
Charlotte, NC Food Bank Expansion Spurred by NMTC
When Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina found itself running out of room in 2015, there was no doubt a larger space was in order. How to fund and finance such a project was another question. In addition to a capital campaign, the answer, it turns out, was a special federal tax credit aimed at supporting community revitalization.
JPMorgan Chase Kicks $15M to Detroit, MI
The nation's largest bank will combine a $10 million, long-term low-cost loan and $5 million in philanthropy to enable the Strategic Neighborhood Fund to finance critical neighborhood projects. The funding may help attract extra capital, and eventually provide local residents further access to affordable housing, grocery stores, schools, and commercial space.
RESEED Recovery Fund Available for NC and SC Farmers
The RESEED Recovery Fund provides affordable loans to farmers in North Carolina and South Carolina who were affected by Hurricanes Florence and Michael. Any NC or SC farmer or value-added producer with documented farm sales of more than $5,000 in 2017 or 2018, who sustained damage from Hurricanes Florence or Michael is eligible. Loans range $2,500 to $10,000.
New PA Farm Bill Proposes Tax Breaks and Loans
The agriculture industry is facing a workforce shortage and Gov. Tom Wolf's administration hopes to address it with the Pennsylvania Farm Bill. This multi-faceted $24 million package includes a variety of measures, including low-interest loans, grants, tax breaks, and more, aimed at cultivating future generations of farmers and providing assistance to help new and beginning farmers.
PA Idea Foundry Launches RLF Fund
Idea Foundry, located in Pittsburgh, PA has created a pilot revolving loan fund designed to support local entrepreneurs innovating around connecting consumers with local foods, reducing regional food insecurity, increasing on-farm sustainability, and increasing jobs in local farming. Funds will be dispersed to as many as six businesses in year one.
MI Hoophouse Program Benefits Farmers and Markets
Thinking about the food system more broadly, Michigan Farmers Market Association (MIFMA) emphasizes the ability of hoophouses to extend Michigan's diverse agricultural production over a longer timeframe. The MIFMA program has averaged $300,000 in loans per year, working with around 42 farms to construct roughly 50,000 square feet of hoophouses annually.
Food System Finally Featured in Climate Debate
Climate-smart agriculture, which aims to boost farm productivity, adapt to climate change, and reduce emissions, is gaining momentum around the globe. Yet the financing required to scale up climate-smart agriculture approaches, is lacking. It is estimated that there is a $200 billion financing gap for smallholders globally.