The Michigan Farmers Market Association (MIFMA), in partnership with the Center for Regional Food Systems at Michigan State University (MSU) and the MSU Student Organic Farm, is facilitating a program designed to help more farmers extend their growing season and strengthen the farmers markets they sell at by making hoop house loans available to farmers selling at farmers markets (vendors) that participate in food assistance programs in 2012. The program is funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
Through this loan program, farmers will “pay off” their loan principal by distributing fresh produce equal to the value of the hoop house loan to individuals using food assistance benefits at farmers markets. For example, if a loan amount of $5,000 is requested, a seasonal vendor who participates in a market for six months each year would need to distribute food valued at $42 each week to food assistance clients in order to pay back the loan principal within the five year loan period.
To learn about eligibility restrictions and for information about how to apply click "read more"
In order to be considered for this loan program, you must:
1) Be a seasonal vendor at a participating farmers market – Downtown Saginaw Farmers Market, Downtown Ypsilanti Farmers Market, Lapeer Farmers Market, Northwest Detroit Farmers Market, Marquette Farmers Market, Flint Farmers Market, or Battle Creek Farmers Market.
2) Complete an application (see links below) and submit it with all supporting documents, by Friday, March 30, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. Applications will be reviewed in and announcements will be made by April 15, 2012.
If you have questions about this loan program, please contact Amanda Segar at 517-432-3381 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions about what kind of hoop house to apply for, please contact Laura Haselhuhn at 517-355-5191 ext. 1408 or email@example.com.