The California FreshWorks Fund program was launched in 2011 as a financing initiative designed to bring grocery stores and other innovative forms of healthy food retail to underserved communities. FreshWorks was created by The California Endowment, in partnership with a broad coalition of public and private capital providers, industry experts and thought partners. FreshWorks was capitalized with over $273MM in investments, making it the largest healthy food financing initiative in the country.
Over the next five years the updated program will meet and exceed the impact its first five years of operation. More specifically, the program will leverage $14MM in PRI capital and $8.3MM in grants to disburse approximately $50MM in loans and grants, with additional NMTC investment of up to $40MM.
FreshWorks will achieve these results through a reinvigorated operational platform that brings market making into focus while offering robust technical assistance and responsive equity and equity-like products. These tools will support a recapitalized microlending program and a new multi-lender network that is incentivized to make flexible loans through a credit enhancement pool that mitigates risk and unlocks private loan capital.