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VT Community Loan Fund Finances VT Farms & Food Producers in 1st Quarter 2018

VT Community Loan Fund Finances VT Farms & Food Producers in 1st Quarter 2018

Total 1st Quarter Lending Reaches $983,000

The Vermont Community Loan Fund helped finance three Vermont farms and food producers in the first quarter of 2018, through its SPROUT deferred payment loan program, and other programs. Total financing from the first quarter reached $983,000.

Sweet Pickins Farm, Putney

Sweet Pickins Farm is a small producer of ducks for eggs and meat, produce and more. They plan to expand capacity by constructing a duck house with lighting customized to maximize the laying potential of the ducks. Financing for the structure, provided through the Loan Fund’s SPROUT deferred payment loan program, preserves one full-time job and is expected to create new seasonal jobs in the near future.

Victory Hemp Foods, Middlebury
Victory Hemp Foods, a Kentucky-based start-up, processes and sells hemp food ingredients to wholesale and retail customers. They purchase hemp seed from a network of farmers in Kentucky (and soon, in Vermont, too) and process it for hemp oil, protein and germ, which are then sold as an ingredient to other food manufacturers and retailed at Whole Foods, Kroger, at farmers’ markets and online. They are purchasing the assets of former VCLF borrower Full Sun Company, including its nearly turn-key Middlebury seed oil extraction mill. Financing is expected to create two full-time and two part-time jobs in Vermont, and will help maintain three existing full-time and two existing part-time jobs in Kentucky.

Whitefield Hop Yard, East Hardwick 
Whitefield Hop Yard grows, harvests and processes hops for Vermont breweries. They approached the Loan Fund to help finance the purchase of a hop harvester, which will increase the speed and efficiency of harvesting, so important due to the tight timeframe of harvesting ripe hops. Financing, through the Loan Fund’s SPROUT deferred payment loan program, will also help cover costs of constructing a new “oast,” a hop-drying kiln, and to make improvements to their existing oast. Financing helps preserve two existing jobs, and is expected to create two new ones.

Since 1987, the Vermont Community Loan Fund has loaned over $102 million to local businesses, affordable housing developers and community-based organizations that has created or preserved 6,100 jobs; built or rehabilitated 4,000 affordable homes; created or preserved quality care for over 4,000 children and their families; and supported community organizations providing vital services to hundreds of thousands of Vermonters.