PVGrows Investment Fund Update — Support for Local Farm and Food Businesses
The PVGrows Investment Fund (PVGIF) has made several loans since we launched last fall, thanks in large part to the support from our community of investors. Read below to learn about the first crop of farm and food businesses receiving financing from our community investment vehicle. As you will notice, these businesses represent the diversity of what it takes to support our food system — distribution, agriculture, infrastructure and value-added products. We are happy to be working with them to increase their impact on the local food system!
Loan Date: November 2015
Purpose: Delivery Truck
Endeavour Transportation is a regional distributor of produce headquartered in South Deerfield. PVGIF financing will help Endeavour Transportation expand its distribution of locally grown produce to regional markets. A new delivery truck will allow the company, which has a long-term relationship with the Pioneer Valley Growers Association, to increase sales by expanding its geographic reach. Local distributors such as Endeavour Transportation are essential to a sustainable regional food system.
Loan Date: December 2015
Kosinski Farms is a third-generation fruit farm in Westfield. In recent decades, the farm has expanded its acreage and added a farm store and bakery. PVGIF is proud to be part of the Kosinski’s next phase of growth, Raven Hollow Winery. This value-added operation utilizes the farm’s fruit seconds by transforming them into juice, wine and cider.
Loan Date: January 2015
Purpose: Delivery Truck, Pump
Artifact Cider Project, located in Springfield, utilizes apples grown throughout the Pioneer Valley to craft their hard ciders. This loan from PVGIF will allow Artifact to purchase a new delivery truck and pump.
According to co-founder, Jake Mazar, “For orchards in the Pioneer Valley to be viable and grow, they need strong local markets for their fruit. Artifact plays an important part in supporting these orchards. The freshness, the terroir, and the locality of the apples are what make a great cider. Our success depends on the orchards and increasingly, the reverse is true as well.”
Loan Date: January 2016
Purpose: New Inventory
What do portable sinks and toilets have to do with the local food system? Recently, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts updated the Good Agricultural Practices (MA GAP) requirements for worker hygiene. Carsons Cans, located in Greenfield, has developed a solid reputation for providing well-maintained portable sink and toilet units to area farms in need of compliance. Farms can reap significant savings not having to plumb their barns with toilets. Carsons Cans serviced 24 local farms during the 2015 growing season, with more being added this year. This business is meeting an essential infrastructure need in the local food system.
Click here to learn more about the PVGrows Investment Fund. To request financing and technical assistance, click here. Low- and no-cost technical assistance is available to farm and food businesses interested in financing from PVGIF.