Black Business Investment Fund (BBIF) provided $6.75 million in New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) financing to 4Roots Foundation towards the construction of a $17.5 million farm campus
BBIF invested $6.75 million in NMTC financing for the construction of the 4Roots Foundation, Inc’s 30,000 square-foot community-oriented food education center, creating 73 full-time jobs. The campus will provide solutions for a more robust food system and build programs around 4Roots’ four core values: education, health, economy, and sustainability.
On average, it takes more than 1,500 miles for food to travel from farm to table. The 4Roots Foundation will address this inefficiency through the collaboration and education of local farmers, students and the community. With broader education around sustainable farming techniques, the Foundation hopes to serve as a sustainable food model for communities across the country.
“We are proud to partner with Black Business Investment Fund for our 4Roots campus,” said Jim Bruce, CFO, 4Roots. “Together, we are investing in the education and training of not only future farmers and agriculture-related businesses, we are investing in the health and quality of life for our community for generations to come.”
The campus’s future development plans include: green space, fitness trails, recreational opportunities, and the addition of a solar canopy, cafe, restaurant, event center, Discovery Center, and Culinary Institute.
This trailblazing farm campus project encompasses one of BBIF’s key NMTC focus areas: providing underserved communities access to healthy food. Since 2014, BBIF has financed 28 projects and loan pools with its NMTC Allocations. These projects have been able to aid in creating and retaining 3,391 jobs in Florida’s underserved communities.
“The 4Roots Foundation is creating a comprehensive model for food resilience right here in the heart of Orlando,” said Duane Lewis, COO, BBIF. “We believe their work will not only provide healthy food options to food-insecure families, agricultural education to the community, and job security for local farmers, but will also create a shift for a more sustainable food system in underserved communities throughout Florida.”
- $17.55 million total project cost
- 30,000 square-foot community center
- 73 permanent full-time jobs
- Educational programs for local county schools about agriculture and sustainability
- Provide local farmers economic security