For four years, organic farmers Luke and Catarina Mahoney connected people throughout New Hampshire’s seacoast with healthy, natural food and with the land that produced it. Then they learned that the lease on their farmland in Rollinsford wouldn’t be renewed.
In fall 2011 the Mahoneys found a potential new home for their farm—halfway across the state. Years earlier, the historic town of Canterbury, N.H. had bought 600 open acres to preserve it from development. With help from Stonyfield Farm CEO Gary Hirshberg, the couple bought the former sod farm and began moving their operations, but needed additional funding for equipment.
Why the Community Loan Fund made the loan
Luke and Catarina had proven to be successful farmers They developed a well-thought-out business plan for this new endeavor and were open to input from others.
The Community Loan Fund’s loan in 2014 saved 10 jobs and helped create four more, while preserving open land and encouraging sustainable farming. The Mahoneys opened a retail shop on the farm and launched a CSA (community-supported agriculture) project in 2013.