Young Farmers Break The Bank…Continued…3% Of Your Wealth

In the last post, I recommended rethinking how your savings, investments, pensions, etc. are being utilized. Most conventional investment mechanisms used by Wall Street do little to diversify wealth and expand social equity (many would say today’s financial markets do quite the opposite – they are, in essence, wealth concentrators). Invest 3% of your wealth in local farmers and food enterprises….and advocate that your community’s institutions, foundations, etc. do the same!

Rhode Island has two major foundations, The Rhode Island Foundation and The Champlin Foundations. Both foundations had above $500 million in assets. I am not familiar with the investment management of The Champlin Foundations.

The Rhode Island Foundation contracts their investment management to a private consulting firm who in turn contracts with other investment advisory firms to manage particular industry/area portfolios. There is no overriding social responsibility criteria to their consultant (I’m certain, I requested it and their only social responsibility actions are to contract with a consultant who advises them how to vote on proxy issues). There is no overriding agro-ecological responsibility criteria.

I have requested a list of their investments and did not receive a reply (although I did receive a long email from their CEO defending their investment behavior).

May I suggest you write to the major private and public foundations and retirement funds in your community/state and ask them 1) if they have social responsibility criteria for their investments, 2) if they have agro-ecological responsibility criteria for their investments, and 3) if they have a list of their investments on a given recent date that they might provide to you.

Please ask them to consider investing 3% of their wealth in sustainable, socially responsible, local farm and food ventures.