How to Apply
Share your story and find out if you are eligible for investment from the Bloom Local Food Fund. Learn how we can make an impact,
and get in touch if you think you are a good fit.
What We Do
The Bloom Local Food Fund provides patient and flexible capital to local enterprises and projects focused on Eastern Ontario through an equity fund & a debt fund.
We look at investments that have impact ingrained in their business models, including ag-tech, food production and processing, and infrastructure enablers such as physical infrastructure, energy production and storage
Our loans range from $100,000 to $500,000 for startups or small businesses, with an interest rate of prime + 3-5% with flexible terms up to four years. There is no application fee and no penalties for early repayment.
We also invest in ventures that require an equity investment between $250,000 to $500,000, focusing on the investment stages where we can bring massive impact with our expertise, particularly Seed to Series A.
We also consider loans or investment up to $1.000,000 for larger-scale community food system projects. The equity terms or interest rate, repayment terms, application fees, and security for these are determined on a case-by-case basis.
Our Eligibility Criteria
The Bloom Local Food Fund is open to applications from those over the age of majority who are working to build sustainable and inclusive rural communities with a thematic focus on sustainable food systems and agriculture.
We welcome applications from ventures working at all levels of the food chain, whether you are structured as a for-profit business or non-profit organization.
We focus on two key questions:
1. Are you a venture, social enterprises or project within food systems or agriculture, and does your work align with our investment priorities?
2. What is your contribution and commitment to local communities and economies in Eastern Ontario?
OUR INVESTMENT PRIORITIES
Bloom Local Food Fund’s investment priorities are aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are “a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and improve the lives and prospects of everyone, everywhere.”
Our investment priorities feature six areas of focus:
How we work
Our process is meant to be as collaborative, supportive, and user-friendly as possible.
Process & Timelines
Here is a summary of the process and timelines you can expect, step-by-step:
1. If you think you meet the eligibility criteria above, click the “Inquire Now” button below to tell us a bit about your social enterprise. We will respond to your inquiry within 3-5 business days.
2. If you are indeed eligible, we will arrange a phone call, videoconference, or (if circumstances allow) in-person meeting to learn more. If you are not eligible, we will do our best to recommend alternatives.
3. We work with you to determine what makes the most sense for your venture, and help you put together a strong and compelling funding application. The amount of time this takes will depend on your level of experience and preparedness.
4. When ready, your application is assessed by a review panel of 4-6 volunteers with diverse backgrounds in terms of lived experience and professional expertise. This due diligence period takes approximately two weeks.
5. We provide you with the review panel’s initial assessment to help you better prepare for your presentation (the next step below), and can also arrange a practice session to offer feedback on your presentation. This can take up to a week, depending on the feedback you receive and how you want to make changes or improvements based on that.
6. You meet with the review panel, either in-person or via videoconference, and have about 15-20 minutes for your presentation where you get to tell your story and share your vision and values. The review panel also has an opportunity to ask questions about your venture and get to know you and your team better.
7. The review panel discusses your application as a group, and makes their recommendation to the Bloom Local Food Fund to approve your funding, or that further work is needed for an approval. This decision is communicated to you within a week of your presentation.
There are no deadlines, so you can apply whenever it makes the most sense for your social enterprise. We are here to help you succeed, and part of that is providing you with timely and honest feedback every step of the way, so you always know where you stand and how you can improve your chances. Ready to start the process?