The Community Food Co-op in Bellingham received a $10,000 grant from the Whatcom Community Foundation to support the co-op’s Farm Fund, which provides low-interest loans to local farmers who use sustainable farming practices.
Farmers utilizing the fund often have trouble securing loans elsewhere. They use funds to cover early-season costs, diversify products, increase environmentally friendly practices and improve farm infrastructure.
“The Foundation is honored to play a role in the Co-op Farm Fund’s revolving loan program by providing funds to meet a portion of the capital needs of local farmers,” said Whatcom Community Foundation CEO Mauri Ingram, in a press release.
The loans have been used for farm enhancements such as greenhouses, irrigation systems, feed, fencing, a chick brooder, branding for local heritage pork and barn improvements.
Since the fund’s start in 2010, no recipients have defaulted on their loans, and six out of seven have increased their farms’ capacities.
For more information on the Farm Fund, contact Jean Rogers at 360-734-8158, ext. 217, or firstname.lastname@example.org.