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Dec 30, 2018

On episode 53 of Sourcing Matters we welcome leadership from the The Carrot Project.  Based out of Massachusetts, The Carrot Project creates a sustainable local farm and food economy by providing financing and business assistance so farm and food enterprises thrive. With a goal to foster a sustainable, diverse food system by supporting small and midsized farms and farm-related businesses - The Carrot Project is expanding accessible financing and increasing farm operations’ ability to use it to build successful, ecologically and financially sustainable, businesses.

Joining us for the 45 minute discussion is The Carrot Project founder and Executive Director Dorothy Suput. Suput's commitment to a sustainable food system grew out of the incredible contrasts between Midwestern agriculture, with which she grew up, and the locally focused food and farming system in Switzerland, where she lived after graduating with a BS from Purdue University. Following graduate school at Tufts, Dorothy worked as the first regional organizer on the 1995 Farm Bill for the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group under the auspices of the Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture, and subsequently, as a consultant for business and agency.

Also profiled in this episode is Julia Shanks, who serves as the Senior Business Advisor to The Carrot Project, and is owner & principal of Julia Shanks food Consulting. Shanks brings a broad range of professional experiences to her clients, from pilot to chef to serial entrepreneur. Julia received her professional training as a chef at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, her BA from Hampshire College and an MBA from Babson College. After more than 10 years of professional cooking, Julia became a college professor of accounting and now works with food businesses and farms, helping them maximize profits and streamline operations through business planning, feasibility studies and operational audits. Julia’s second book, The Farmer’s Office provides tips, tools and templates for farmers to successfully manage a growing farm business.

Co-host Jennifer Hashley of The New Entry Sustainable Farming Project happens to also be a strategic advisor to The Carrot Project, and as always, Jen brings a wealth of knowledge and understanding to round out our interesting conversation. Tune-In to these agents of change focused on a more stable and regional food system based on pragmatic economic modeling and a better understanding of the interests of a modern consumer.