Generously supported by the 11th Hour Project, WK Kellogg Foundation‘s Food & Community Fellowship Program, the Woodcock Foundation, and Grace Communications Foundation, Finance for Food was a nonprofit project that Elizabeth Ü operated between late 2010 and early 2015. It focused on educating people about the wide variety of capital opportunities available to support them in identifying and securing values-aligned financing. Its ultimate goal: catalyze an increase in the pace and scale of the transition to a food system that restores the health of our bodies, families, communities, economies, and environment.
Over the course of the project, Elizabeth reached thousands of sustainable food system entrepreneurs and investors in the US and Canada via dozens of workshops and keynote addresses. As executive director of Finance for Food, she also authored the book Raising Dough: the Complete Guide to Financing a Socially Responsible Food Business (Chelsea Green Publishing, 2013) and contributed to a range of articles, guides, reports, and radio shows developed in collaboration with other stakeholders.
Imagine a world in which:
- Entrepreneurs across the United States are helping people solve environmental and social problems, domestically and abroad, through a wide variety of food-based businesses founded upon sustainable values, and
- Lack of access to capital no longer stands in the way of their efforts to launch, maintain, or grow their social ventures.
This was the vision of Finance for Food.
Staff & advisors
Elizabeth Ü was the founder and executive director of Finance for Food.
The Kitchen Cabinet of Advisors was comprised of thought leaders and innovators from a variety of fields, including social finance, sustainable agriculture and farming, food-based social enterprise, food systems philanthropy, and food justice.
The following people graciously provided inspiration, mentorship, friendship and encouragement in the years prior to the founding of Finance for Food, and they served as guiding stars through the duration of the project.
(Please excuse broken links; these movers-and-shakers may have moved on to new roles.)
Chief Executive Officer of People’s Community Market
Integrated Capital Specialist at Outside Investments, a division of Northstar Capital
Executive Director of Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems Funders
Former President & COO of Pacific Exchange
Executive Director of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE)
Organic Farmer & Author; Member, National Council on the Arts
Executive Director of Hawthorne Valley Association
President of First Nations Development Institute
Finance Director of Solidago Foundation
Director and Senior Scientist of the Food & Environment Program, Union of Concerned Scientists
Director of Programming, The Appalachian Center for Economic Networks (ACEnet)
Journalist and writer
President & CEO of RSF Social Finance
Executive Director at Initiative for Food & AgriCultural Transformation (InFACT), The Ohio State University
Former President of Slow Food USA
Finance for Food continues to be a project of the Trust for Conservation Innovation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that serves as the project’s fiscal sponsor. That role is currently limited to accepting royalties received from sales of Raising Dough: the Complete Guide to Financing a Socially Responsible Food Business and ensuring they are used to further the project’s vision.