Massachusetts

Federal Policy Efforts (State-specific)

Cooperative Fund of New England

The Cooperative Fund of New England (CFNE) is a forty year-old CDFI that is using HFFI financing to increase healthy food access in New England and eastern New York State through the Healthy Food/Cooperative Communities initiative, which combines financing, development services, technical assistance, and data collection and measurement to increase low-income consumers' utilization and membership in co-ops. To supplement its HFFI financing, CFNE launched its Food Cooperatives and Healthy Food Access program (FCHFA) to help food co-ops better serve low-income communities. CFNE partnered with Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA), a regional food co-op association, to document food co-op programs in this area, promote their efforts, and support them in innovating and expanding healthy food access for local food insecure households. Since 2011, CFNE has financed $3.6 million in loans to nine HFFI-eligible food co-op projects, for their development and expansion around low-access communities throughout New England. HFFI financing has supported projects such as Harvest Food Co-Op in Boston; River Valley Market in Northampton; and North Quabbin Food Co-op in Orange, MA.  You can find more information here.

Source of money: HFFI CDFI-Financial Assistance Program

Note: The Cooperative Fund of New England is a CDFI headquartered in Massachusetts that is working throughout New England and eastern New York State.

Boston Community Capital

Boston Community Capital financed the acquisition and build out of Haley House, a commercial training kitchen located in a café setting that provides culinary training for homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals in Boston, MA, as well as the Bornstein & Pearl Food Production Center and Community Solutions complex. You can find more information here

Source of money: HFFI CDFI-Financial Assistance Program 

Brockton Neighborhood Health Center

Brockton Neighborhood Health Center (BNHC) is a CDC Federally Qualified Community Health Center in Brockton, Massachusetts. BNHC, in partnership with Vincente’s Property, LLC, is using HFFI financing to develop a full-size grocery store in a 34,000-square foot facility on a site previously abandoned by a regional grocery chain, which also houses another BNHC site that offers adult primary care and nutrition. The new site, which opened in 2015, has a teaching kitchen and is attached to Vicente's Supermarket, a Cape Verdean grocery store, and has a teaching kitchen. Registered dieticians offer cooking classes to BNHC patients and to the public, and also participate in shared medical/nutrition visits where a primary care provider teams up with the dietician to offer group medical visits, nutrition education, and cooking classes. Participants in the cooking classes are also taken to the market to teach them to read labels and choose healthy foods. BNHC collaborates with the market to promote healthy food purchases through multi-lingual signage. This project will create 40 full-time positions and will leverage $13,945,000 from U.S. Treasury HFFI awardees. You can find more information here.

Source of money: HFFI CED Program

Boston Community Capital and Reinvestment Fund

Boston Community Capital and Reinvestment Fund partnered to use HFFI funding to support acquisition/predevelopment financing for Vicente Tropical Supermarket in Brockton, MA. The market primarily serves the immigrant community in Brockton and the surrounding area, and an estimated 70% of its customers are Cape Verdean and Haitian. The new store is located in a low-income tract (59% AMI) that is underserved by healthy food retail. The Brockton Community Health Center has agreed to develop an adult primary care/wellness clinic on the same site, adjacent to the new 32,000-square-foot Vicente Tropical Supermarket. The new store is projected to create 96 permanent jobs. You can find more information about BCC here and Reinvestment Fund here

Source of money: HFFI CDFI-Financial Assistance Program

Note: Reinvestment Fund is a CDFI headquartered in Pennsylvania that finances projects in Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. 

Common Capital

Common Capital is a non-profit organization that is committed to a thriving local economy in order to create positive social and community impacts. Common Capital’s HFFI program focuses on enabling the delivery of fresh, healthy food to underserved populations and providing financing to farm enterprises to expand production and delivery to those populations. Some of these funds supported Simple Gift Farms, which sells produce at farmers' markets and is located in a USDA-defined food desert in Amherst, Massachusetts. Common Capital also financed an innovative program to deliver farm CSA shares to four low-income public housing units. By offering local farms an up-front CSA financing option, Common Capital enables farm CSAs to engage more low-income members who would otherwise be unable to pay up front for the 18-22 week produce delivery season. You can find more information here.

Source of money: HFFI CDFI-Financial Assistance Program

Note: Common Capital is a CDFI headquartered in Brookline, Massachusetts that is working throughout the state of Massachusetts.

​​​​​​​Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation

Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation (DBEDC) acts to build a strong, thriving, and diverse community in Boston's Dorchester neighborhoods and is using HFFI financing to redevelop a 35,650-square-foot building into the Bornstein & Pearl Food Production Center in Dorchester, Massachusetts. CropCircle Kitchen, Inc. will run a commercial kitchen to foster the growth of local food businesses, create employment opportunities for residents, and facilitate improved access to healthy food in the immediate neighborhood. Through a partnership with two culinary training programs and DBEDC's Re-Entry initiative, the program intends to create at least 37 new full-time jobs for low-income individuals and those who face barriers to employment. You can find more information about project development here and about DBEDC here

Source of money: HFFI CED Program

​​​​​​​Local Enterprise Assistance Fund

The Local Enterprise Assistance Fund (LEAF) is a Community Development Financial Institution established in 1983 whose mission is to provide financing for cooperatives and other social enterprises that benefit low‐income people. LEAF is using its HFFI award to provide financing nationally to natural food cooperatives that create jobs and provide access to healthy food in rural and urban communities. LEAF is one of only three CDFIs in the nation that has focused and developed expertise in lending to the community owned grocery store market. You can find more information here.

Source of money: HFFI CDFI-Financial Assistance Program

Note: Local Enterprise Assistance Fund is a CDFI headquartered in Massachusetts that works nationally.

​​​​​​​Madison Park Development Corporation

Madison Park Development Corporation (MPDC) works with low-to-moderate income Roxbury residents and their allies to achieve the physical, economic, social and cultural renaissance of Roxbury. MMPDC is using HFFI financing to expand an existing 8,500-square-foot Tropical Foods Supermarket into a full-sized, 30,000-square-foot supermarket in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston. This market expansion has three major goals: 1) bring a desperately needed supermarket to Roxbury, a low-income neighborhood of Boston; 2) provide 46 permanent, full-time positions for the low-income residents of the neighborhood, of which 38 will be reserved for low-income local residents; and 3) act as a catalyst for future commercial development in the Dudley Square commercial center. You can find more information here.

Source of money: HFFI CED Program

​​​​​​​United Teen Equality Center, Inc.

Founded in 1999 by youth responding to local gang violence, UTEC is now nationally recognized as a model youth development agency that works to nurture disconnected youth looking to trade violence and poverty for social and economic success. UTEC is using HFFI financing to create several new businesses to create new jobs and contribute to community revitalization in Lowell, Massachusetts. UTEC will create a café which includes a retail sales outlet with catering and event management services and a community kitchen/food manufacturing incubator, building on its successful track record with FRESH Roots catering, which promotes healthy nutritional choices and trains young people in work, life, and culinary skills. UTEC expects to create 37 jobs, at least 28 of which will be filled by low-income residents, specifically providing employment opportunities for young adults with past criminal backgrounds who face obstacles finding employment in the area. You can find more information here.

Source of money: HFFI CED Program

State & Local Policy Efforts

Policy Efforts to Watch: Massachusetts Food Trust Program

In 2014, the Massachusetts legislature passed a bill to establish the Massachusetts Food Trust Program, a healthy food financing program that would provide loans, grants, and technical assistance to support the development, renovation, and expansion of healthy food retailers and food enterprises in parts of the state that need them the most. This could include supermarkets, corner stores, farmers markets, and mobile markets, as well as community kitchens, greenhouses, and food distribution hubs. The measure was included in an Environmental Bond Bill and signed into law in 2014 by Governor Patrick.

The program was created in response to the recommendations of the Massachusetts Grocery Access Task Force and the advocacy of convening partners, including the Massachusetts Food Association, the Massachusetts Public Health Association, The Boston Foundation, and The Food Trust. The task force met over the course of 2012 and developed policy recommendations to support supermarkets and other fresh food retail in underserved areas across the state.

Authorizing the program marked an important milestone in the state’s commitment to improving food access in areas of need. After four years of tireless advocacy by task force members and partners across the state, in July 2016, Governor Charlie Baker signed into law the FY17 Operating Budget, which included $100,000 in dedicated funding to the Massachusetts Food Trust program and an  Economic Development bond bill authorizing $6 million for the program’s capital expenses.. Advocates are now working with leaders from the Baker Administration and legislature to ensure that the bond funds are appropriated in the upcoming Capital Budget. To stay up-to-date on healthy food access in Massachusetts, click here.

For a full understanding of Healthy Food Financing Initiatives from advocacy to implementation, see The Food Trust’s Healthy Food Financing Handbook.

To find examples of other federal, state, and local policy efforts and initiatives -- as well as financing opportunities -- by going to Find Money & Policy Efforts by State.