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New loan for young agri-entrepreneurs

New loan for young agri-entrepreneurs

FCC created a loan to support agriculture and agri-food projects

By Jennifer Jackson

The key to encouraging growth and innovation in the agriculture industry is to invest in agriculture’s youth, according to many voices in the industry. This belief is one of the reasons that Farm Credit Canada (FCC) created a new loan program available for young entrepreneurs in all aspects of the agri-food industry, according to a Feb. 16 release.

The Young Entrepreneur Loan “complements the (current) FCC Young Farmer Loan and is aimed at helping young entrepreneurs, under age 40, in the agriculture retail, manufacturing and food processing sectors,” says Eva Larouche, senior consultant media relations for FCC. The loan “offers financing of up to $1 million per qualified applicant and can be used for the purchase or improvement of agriculture-related assets or the purchase of shares in an agriculture-related business, including those in the agri-food sector.”

Qualified applicants must submit a 25 per cent down payment. The loan offers custom variable five-year fixed rates and does not include processing fees for the entrepreneur.

The new loan will create better access to capital for agricultural project growth, according to Larouche.

“Through the Young Entrepreneur and Young Farmer Loans, FCC is improving access to capital that allows young people – farm families, producers and business entrepreneurs – to enter the agriculture value chain, grow their businesses and pursue their dreams in this strong and diverse industry,” she says. “The future of Canadian agriculture depends on attracting the next generation of young, bright entrepreneurs to careers throughout the industry’s supply chain, as well as helping those already in the industry realize their dreams of becoming more established.”

Lawrence MacAulay, minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, also recognizes the potential of young agri-entrepreneurs.

“The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector needs more young people to get engaged, because they bring the energy and innovative ways of thinking that grow the sector and keep it on the cutting-edge,” said MacAulay in the release.

“Through the Young Entrepreneur and Young Farmer Loans, FCC is improving access to capital so that young Canadian farmers and entrepreneurs can start and grow their businesses, and pursue their dreams in this dynamic industry.”

Farmers can visit the FCC website for more information on the loan program.