AUSTIN, Texas — Whole Foods Market will increase funding of its Local Producer Loan Program by $15 million for a total of $25 million.
Started in 2007, the program provides loans to local growers, producers and food artisans to help grow their businesses. Whole Foods has issued 184 loans totaling $10 million to 155 businesses since the program’s inception.
“Expanding the Local Producer Loan Program is a direct result of the innovations and successes of our loan recipients,” Betsy Foster, global vice president of growth and business development, said in a press release. “By playing a role in advancing new ideas, growing businesses and realizing dreams, Whole Foods Market stays connected with both our neighborhood producers and our global food community.”
Whole Foods stocks products from some loan recipients, and says others “support the natural foods industry.”
The loans have fixed low-interest rates and typically range from $1,000 to $100,000.
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