Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
Organic Farmer Loan Fund

Programs \ Organic Farmer Loan Fund

March 2020

The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association is accepting applications to its Organic Farmer Loan Fund (OFLF) for the Spring 2020 funding cycle. This fund is intended particularly to help organic farmers working on establishing a credit history for their farms.

Eligibility. Loans are available to:

MOFGA certified organic farmers and farmers exempt from certification under the NOP rules*;

Farmers interested in making the transition to organic management;

Current participants in, or graduates of, MOFGA’s Journeyperson Program

Permitted Uses, Amounts, Rates & Terms. The loan fund will provide loan guarantees to small and medium-sized businesses seeking to expand or enhance their farm or processing operations through business planning, marketing, aggregation, or other business enhancement. Funds in this program may also be used for working capital or equipment purchases. Loans from the Organic Farmer Loan Fund are in the range of $2,000 to $20,000. Loan program interest rates will be determined by Bangor Savings Bank at the time of loan application.

Emergency Loans: COVID-19. The OFLF is accepting applications for emergency assistance to farms and processors dealing with emerging issues related to Covid19.  This can be used for any reason related to mitigating the effects of shutdowns or other business and labor disruptions experienced by farms and processors.  Applications must go through the review process by Bangor Savings Bank.  MOFGA will work to expedite the loan process by our Loan Review Committee.

Application Review & Loan Closing. Applications are made to Bangor Savings Bank. If the loan is turned down by the Bank applicants may apply to the MOFGA Organic Farmer Loan Fund for a loan guarantee.  Applications will be reviewed by an advisory committee, which makes the final decision on the loans. If there are questions after initial review, there may be follow-up inquiries to the applicant or coordination of an in-person or virtual interview. Bangor Savings Bank will be administering the program, and your final loan agreement will be guaranteed by MOFGA and held by Bangor Savings Bank. Prior to closing, Bangor Savings Bank will submit a letter of commitment that will detail the closing requirements. MOFGA, as well as the farmer, is at risk in this program. The advisory committee will be reviewing applications with an eye to the potential success of the applicant.

If the loan application is turned down by Bangor Savings, MOFGA will make a decision on reviewing the application. The following information will be considered in the MOFGA loan review:

A narrative describing your farm business plan and how you will utilize the loan.

A cash flow statement for the farm business.

A farm profit and loss statement for the preceding year.

A description of any outstanding loans or debts


Reporting. MOFGA reserves the right to require annual financial reports and/or quarterly cash flow statements.

Application & Timeline. Applications must be submitted to Bangor Savings Bank by Friday, May 29, 2020. Please go to: bangor.com/locations for information on branches near you.

For questions about the Loan Fund or the application process please contact the MOFGA office at (207) 568-4142, or email [email protected].

MOFGA is an equal opportunity lender.

* 7 CFR Part 205 National Organic Program Final Rule Section 205.101 (a)(1) (see page 398, part 205.101: "Exemptions and exclusions from certification.")