Over the past seven years of farming on the HAFA Farm, Hmong farmers have been conservative in their farming approach, due to fears about the longevity of HAFA’s land access program and whether the land will be secured for future generations or whether the HAFA Farm will discontinue providing land access after our lease expires. But the support of Minnesota Legislature in the 2020 MN Infrastructure Bonding Bill, which included the allocation of $2 million dollars for the purchase of the HAFA Farm after a $500,000 thousand match, gave hope to HAFA farmer-members. This news gave joy to our farmer members, elevating their spirits and assuring them of the opportunities and potential that lay ahead. This past November, HAFA concluded its capital campaign to secure the remaining match funds, and with the support of organizations such as Ceres Trust, Center for Prevention at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, Schmidt Family Foundation, M Health Fairview, HAFA’s farmer-members, and large and small donors, we exceeded our goal.Read More
Ka Maha ʻUlu o Koholālele, literally translated as “the breadfruit grove of Koholālele,” is a community-led food system project transforming approximately 80 acres of former sugar plantation and current eucalyptus plantation lands in Koholālele, Hāmākua, Hawaiʻi, into Hawaiʻi’s largest regenerative ʻulu (breadfruit) agroforestry system.
Accordingly, we wanted to be very intentional about who we invited into the process of planning and planting this space. Between September – October 2021, we worked with Ola Design Group to draft a baseplan for the Kilohana section of Ka Maha ʻUlu (Figure 5), which we would utilize in November to lay out and plant our first 65 ʻulu trees.Read More
What does it look like for 12 Black food actors to come together at the table (or in this case, zoom!) and make decisions around funding that would significantly impact the future of 8 food businesses in NY? What does it mean for an institution to invest, with the criteria for being funded centered on environmental impact, community well-being, and economic justice? How can honoring the realities that entrepreneurs face by involving them in the underwriting process mean for the impact of investment? Black Farmer Fund, an emerging community-governed investment fund, explored these questions through their recent pilot phase.
2021 was a year filled with growth, learning, deepened relationships, and most notably, our first experience redistributing capital into the hands of black agricultural businesses. We successfully raised a $1M pilot fund from individuals and institutions, and have so far deployed various combinations of integrated capital to eight transformative businesses. We are excited to share with you our 2021 Annual Report!Read More