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CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series
March 22, May 10, June 7, October 11

-Overview

The CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series is a free, exclusive online series connecting businesses and projects within the food system to development finance tools, such as bonds, tax increment finance, tax credits, revolving loan funds, and more, to create equitable local and regional food systems. This series will showcase how development finance agencies from across the country are investing in local food systems. Development finance agencies will present case studies of projects – from farmers’ markets, food processors, farmers, restaurants, food hubs, and more – explaining how the financing tool works and why that financing tool was chosen for each project. Each installment of this series will explore how the development finance toolbox can be used to generate investment for different focus areas, such as disaster relief, neighborhood redevelopment, entrepreneurs, and more.


Below are the recordings to the previous webinars in this series:


§ Disaster Recovery for the Food System – April 16, 2020
§ The Landscape of Food Systems Finance – May 28, 2020
§ Neighborhood Revitalization Through Food Systems Finance – July 30, 2020
§ Financing Food Systems Entrepreneurs – September 29, 2020
§ Financing Food-Centered Redevelopment – April 13, 2021
§ Financing Food Systems Through FinTech -- July 13, 2021
§ Debunking Risk in Food System Finance -- October 12, 2021
§ Cultivating Equitable Lending Models in Agriculture Finance -- March 22, 2022
§ Where's the Beef? Financing Meat Processing Infrastructure -- May 10, 2022


With funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, CDFA is researching how development finance agencies can become more engaged in developing localized food systems through traditional finance approaches. The premise of this project is to suggest and then prove that, if organized and defined properly, the food system can become a defined asset class worthy of traditional investment. Through this work, CDFA aims to advance opportunities and leverage existing capital financing streams that scale local and regional food systems and increase access to better food while creating new living wage jobs in communities across the country.


>>> Learn more about CDFA’s initiative to define the food system asset class

Register

-Agenda

CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Tue 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Cultivating Equitable Lending Models in Agriculture Finance
Geographical barriers, along with the seasonal variability of agriculture businesses, make accessing capital difficult for farmers and ranchers. Additional barriers exist for women, veterans, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) who have historically experienced limited access to agriculture programs and services. There are several approaches being adopted to reduce inequities in lending practices to help socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers purchase farmland, equipment, buildings, and livestock. During this installment of the CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series, join us to learn about strategies to expand access to capital for underserved farmers.
Moderator(s)
Speaker(s)
  • Aaron Blyth, Agricultural Program Manager, Latino Economic Development Center
  • Rodrigo Cala, Agricultural Trainer, Latino Economic Development Center
  • Brett Melone, Chief Business Strategies Officer, California FarmLink
  • Michael Reilly, Executive Director, Foodshed Capital

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Tue 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Where’s the Beef? Financing Meat Processing Infrastructure
Demand for local meat continues to grow, but bottlenecks in the processing supply chain inhibit market opportunities for livestock farmers across the country. Meanwhile, a global pandemic brought to light the fragility of the U.S. food system as slaughterhouses closed, grocery shelves emptied, and farmers were forced to cull thousands of animals. Innovative ideas are required to address these issues, which include new investment opportunities and other emerging federal financing programs for local meat processing infrastructure. During this installment of the CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series, we will highlight financing solutions to reinvest in local meat processing facilities.
Moderator(s)
  • Angela Blatt, Director, Research & Technical Assistance, Council of Development Finance Agencies
Speaker(s)
  • Paul Dietmann, Senior Focused Lending Specialist, Compeer Financial
  • Mike Heald, Vice President of Investment Programs, Heifer International
  • Karama Neal, Administrator, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Mae Wu, Deputy Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Tue 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Driving Investment in Regional Food Supply Chains
Investment in physical food systems infrastructure, such as storage and distribution facilities, is essential to increase capacity in regional food economies. Too often, investment opportunities in the food supply chain are hyper-focused on a specific link, rather than taking a systems approach to financing regional food-related projects. During this installment of the CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series, we will explore opportunities to access capital and leverage federal funds to support new investments in regional infrastructure for food aggregation, processing, storage, and more.
Moderator(s)
  • Angela Blatt, Director, Research & Technical Assistance, Council of Development Finance Agencies
Speaker(s)
  • Ariel Miller, Director, Research & Technical Assistance, Council of Development Finance Agencies

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Tue 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Don’t Throw Away Opportunity! Creative Financing for Addressing Food-Related Waste
Across the nation, as much as 40% of food is wasted during production, processing, and distribution as well as disposal. At every stage of the supply chain moving food from farm to fork, food-related waste is created as a result of limited technology and inadequate infrastructure. During this installment of the CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series, we will explore how innovative partnerships are leveraging creative financing approaches to reduce food-related waste along the supply chain.

-Location

The CDFA Food Systems Finance Webinar Series will take place on Zoom.

Webinars will be recorded and placed online for participants to access afterwards. Attendees who miss a webinar will have access to the online recordings as well.

-Registration

Register in advance to confirm your participation and receive login information. Registration is free and open for CDFA members and non-members.

Register