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Appreciation for the Co-op Farm Fund

Farmers share their appreciation for the Co-op Farm Fund

These projects are made possible only with the donations of Co-op member-owners and the support of the Community Food Co-op and the Sustainable Whatcom Fund of the Whatcom Community Foundation.

We thank you for your donations! With your continued support, the Co-op Farm Fund can provide more grant and loan funds to local sustainable and organic farms. Donations are accepted on our website or at any Co-op register.

Mauri Ingram, CEO, Whatcom Community Foundation (re: Farm Fund loan program)— “Access to expansion capital is often limited for farmers with smaller operations. The Farm Fund’s loan program makes those critical dollars available at a low interest rate. The best part is that your contributions will be recycled many times over, making it possible for multiple local farms to invest in their operations, their livelihood and a stronger local food system.”

Francisco Cabrera, Cabrera Farms— “The (Farm Fund) grant is very helpful for small farmers who are growing like we are.”

Katie Pencke, Alluvial Farms— “It is a profound gesture that a local food cooperative would provide grant funding in order to support the establishment of new food producers in their community.”

Photo courtesy of Matthew McDermott and Katie Pencke of Alluvial Farms.

Amy Frye, Boldly Grown Farm (Farm Fund grant to purchase 78 macro bins)— “We would have been up a creek without a paddle without the extra capacity. I really don’t know what we would have done.”

Billy Tate, Moondance Farm— “We will be on track to have this storage area ready for our fall harvest, which along with the bulk totes will allow us to distribute an unprecedented amount food from our farm particularly in the fall winter time frame. We appreciate the Farm Fund’s support in the advancement of our farm.”

Rob Jordan, Vertical Fog Farm (equipment for processing and packaging of salad mix and other cut greens)— “My purpose for the grant was to buy equipment and supplies to facilitate my produce sales—mainly my processed, cut greens. I used the grant for items such as sanitizable harvest bins, storage and propagation shelves, and processing and packaging supplies. The grant funding was a tremendous help in expanding my business to new customers. As a new farm in Whatcom County, the Next Step grant (and other Farm Fund programs) have had a huge impact on growing and expanding my wholesale sales.”

Rob Jordan of Vertical Fog Farm in the greenhouse on his farm.
Rob Jordan of Vertical Fog Farm in the greenhouse on his farm.

Gretchen Woody, Spring Frog Farm— “The (Farm Fund supported) equipment is fantastic and is close to what I have been missing to make my income more sustainable.”

Pablo Silva, Silva Family Farm (translated) “Thank you very much for supporting us. I hope you can get more help to help more farmers! Really, thank you very much.”

Max Morange, Bellingham Food Bank— “Please know that our Bellingham Food Bank’s deep commitment to the (nutritional and health needs) of farmworkers is due in large part to the work that the Farm Fund has made possible.”

Liz Lopez, Mariposa Farm (Next Step grant to complete barn/wash and pack station)— “Thanks so much. Muchas muchas gracias de corazon.”

The barn at Mariposa Farm under construction and completed.

Aurora Lindquist, The Growing Garden— “We very much wanted to build farm infrastructure at our place, on our own land. We were scrambling to keep up with operations while tackling these big projects. The Farm Fund Next Step grant helped address that issue.”

Chris Henderson, Small Acres Farm— “The grant money was used to purchase a potato digger attachment for our tractor. This one-time investment will allow the farm to produce significantly more potatoes with the same amount of labor for years to come.”

Cabrera Farm (bought a disc harrow carrot lifter, and irrigation equipment with a Next Step grant (translated)— “It is very helpful for small farmers who are growing like we are. We saved more money by not having to rent equipment. We were able to use this money for seeds. It’s a big help for us.”

Nelida Martinez, Pure Nelida Farm— “We are just starting to dip our toes into selling to some new stores, so it (the Next Step grant) will help.”

Alex Perez from Northwest Agriculture Business Council, Nelida Martinez from Pure Nelida, and Jean Rogers from the Co-op’s Farm Fund, present Nelida with her Next Step Grant funds (photo taken in 2019).