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Benneth

Mosaic Farm

Shelburne Falls, MA

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Personal Story

I grew up in Massachusetts and always felt at home working with the land here.

After working on farms and in CSAs and farmers markets in the region for nearly a decade, I am starting my own operation. I value my years of experience that have helped me identify market niches for my own business, and learn how to raise my crops successfully.

In my day job, I work for The Carrot Project where I help many other small farmers plan for their businesses and access financing.

Business Description

The name Mosaic Farm refers to a diversified & sustainable farm, and derives from the term "landscape mosaic:" a geographic group of site-level ecosystems. I'm managing the farm with a long-term view towards interconnected ecosystem health & nutritious foods.

I'm starting small, on just an acre. Still, I'll be harvesting 2500 quarts of strawberries and 2000 lbs of vegetables!

Our customers are local customers in our state who want fresh, organic berries available, especially young families with children, as they are the biggest berry consuming segment of the local population.

My biggest challenges will be variable weather, and long-term land tenure for my business, I've chosen to address these challenges by covering my delicate berries, and by starting small and renting land locally, so I can build a record for my business and eventually buy a larger farm.

I'd like to continue to grow Mosaic Farm into a full service berry farm with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and unusual berries like gooseberries and currants. I'd also like to grow garlic for local markets and to sell as seed to other farmers and gardeners. Everything is certified organic.

What is the purpose of this loan?

This loan will fund the following items for the farm:

1. Seeds and Plants - $800
2. Irrigation - $1,200
3. Implements & Tools - $2,000
4. Compost & Fertilizer - $500
5. Market Supplies - $500

I am expecting my business will be more positively impacted by this loan than by any any other factor I can think of. Starting a farm requires some long-term purchases that pay off in efficiency over time, so a 0% interest loan is critical to spreading out my early costs and preserving my working capital in these first few years.

Therefore, I can choose crops that offer the best market niche for my business, rather than the crops that have the quickest return, but not the best margin or local demand. This flexibility helps me improve the profitability of my business and meet the local market needs best. I'm starting with planting organic strawberries because they offer a good price, are in high demand and they will help me define my business identity as a great place to go for organic berries.

Benneth's loan is endorsed by The Greenhorns. The information below explains why her trustee thinks Benneth is a great candidate for a Kiva Zip loan.
How long have you known this person?

3 years - 5 years

Tell us about your relationship with this borrower.

Benneth and I have been colleagues for more than 5 years. Like me, she straddles the worlds of farmer and farm service provider. Benneth is always on time, dependable, resourceful and well organized in her work with The Carrot Project. These are all very good traits for farming.

Tell us about this borrower's personality and character, and why you are endorsing him or her for a Kiva Zip loan.

Benneth is kind, reliable, attentive to detail and pleasure to work with.

Tell us about this borrower's business, and why you believe a Kiva Zip loan will contribute to his or her success.

In her work with The Carrot Project, Benneth is called on to evaluate the business plans and operations of dozens of farmers-- she brings to this her own experience as a farmer, but has definitely benefited and I believe now has some insight into a few great gaps (particularly for cane and soft fruit and perennial vegetables) which are highly desired in the marketplace. I have full confidence in her and hope that she can continue to work as a farm service provider, but also live her dream and produce perennial crops as a side business.

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PAYING BACK

A loan of $5,000 helps me to acquire the most critical start-up needs we have on the farm: seeds, plants, irrigation, implements, tools, fertilizer, and market supplies.

Disbursed Jul 22, 2013
Repayment Term:
24 monthly payments
Grace Period:
6 months
Listed:
Jul 19, 2013
Disbursed:
Jul 22, 2013
Paying Back:
Jul 23, 2013

About Mosaic Farm

Industry:
Agriculture
Years in Operation:
New Business
Website:
mosaicfarm.com
Badges:
Badge_connectedness_gold_small

What are Borrower Badges?

Borrower Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward borrowers’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

This loan is endorsed by

Trustee Type:
Non profit organization
Location:
Hudson, NY
Badges:
Badge_repayment_gold_small
On Zip Since:
Jun 12, 2012
(22 months)
Loans Endorsed:
7
Total Value:
$40,000
Fundraising/Raised:
0
Paying on Time:
4
Paying Back Late:
0
Repaid in Full:
3
Defaulted:
0
Repayment Rate:
100%
Why are you endorsing Benneth?

Benneth is kind, reliable, attentive to detail and pleasure to work with.

What are Trustee Badges?

Trustee Badges are a system designed to recognize and reward trustees’ engagement with the Kiva Zip website.

There are two types of badges that are tiered like medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

  1. 'Repayment badges' are awarded for the on-time repayment of loans.
  2. 'Connectedness badges' are awarded for engagement with the Kiva Zip website.
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