FarmWorks Investment Co-operative Limited was incorporated as a for-profit Co-operative on May 18, 2011 by an association of community leaders concerned about social, economic and cultural needs. FarmWorks promotes and provides strategic and responsible community investment in food production and distribution in order to increase access to a sustainable local food supply for all Nova Scotians. There is significant potential for agriculture and food production to benefit health, employment, and the Provincial economy.
FarmWorks Community Economic Development Investment Fund (CEDIF) enables Nova Scotians annually to purchase common shares in a diversified portfolio of businesses that yield meaningful financial returns on investments. These investments provide subordinated debt financing for farms, food processors, and value-added food producers, helping to increase the viability and sustainability of agriculture and the security of a healthy food supply.
FarmWorks creates meaningful partnerships with investors and with loan recipients, with businesses and other lenders. These partnerships contribute to the growth of food-related enterprises across the province.
FarmWorks Directors and Advisors identify enterprises that will successfully and sustainably increase production and profitability, and work closely with them to mentor and promote their businesses. Guidelines for measuring and reporting outcomes are in place for supported businesses and for the Board.
In less than three years years Nova Scotians have invested $721,000 in FarmWorks. Loans have already been made to more than 25 businesses and soon there will be more. Loan repayments are immediately available to lend to other businesses.