Field Fund Grant Program

Reflecting our co-op principles and goals, Lakewinds has committed to support the local farming community through the Lakewinds Organic Field Fund (LOFF).   The LOFF is a grant program designed to provide funding for farmers who are working on the development and sustainability of organics through research and development, organic certification, transitioning farms from conventional to organic, creating new farms and land trusts for organic farms. If you review the current grantees and their projects below, you’ll see that Lakewinds is open to new farmers as well as established, and wants to serve a wide variety of needs.

Lakewinds’ Organic Field Fund is open to all farmers and farming associations, but preference will be given for farmers and farming organizations located in Minnesota, northern Iowa, and western Wisconsin.

“Our goal for this grant program was to strengthen our support of the local farming industry. Supporting the local food system is an integral part of who we are as a natural foods co-op,”
-Dale Woodbeck, General Manager

Announcing the 2015 Lakewinds Organic Field Fund Recipients:

Lakewinds is proud to grant funding to the following farms and organizations that share our passion for organic food, land stewardship, sustainable agriculture, new farms, and a greater access to healthy food in our communities.  Our eleven (11) recipients received funds totaling $55,572 toward their diverse and valuable projects.


 Bakers' Acres – Avon, MN

  • Will expand wash and pack area, and purchase equipment to maximize produce quality, increasing handling and storage capacity.  Will achieve food safety compliance and extend growing season.
  • Total funded: $4,225

Beez Kneez – Minneapolis, MN

  • To fund Camp Beez Kneez, a new educational, 14 week, hands-on guided beekeeping course focused on organic and sustainable practices. 
  • Total Funded: $8,000

Blue Ox Organics – Wheeler, WI

  • Will complete root cellar for winter vegetable storage, creating the ability to provide local, organic produce in winter months.
  • Total Funded: $4,225

The Farm of Minnesota – Hutchinson, MN

  • Will bring current packing shed to food safety standards, and achieve compliance for G.A.P. certification.
  • Total Funded: $4,225

Fox and Fawn Farm – New Germany, MN

  • Will continue New Crops Project, year two.  Further product diversity project to introduce new or uncommon crops to region, by purchasing nursery trees and shrubs.
  • Total Funded: $1,500

Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) – Spring Valley, WI

  • Will support the Farmer-to-Farmer Mentoring Project, which pairs 30-35 new farmers with successful and experienced organic farmers.  
  • Total Funded: $7,500

Prairie Point Farm – Browns Valley, MN

  • Will purchase a tractor-driven feed mill for processing transitional and organic grain. Feed will be used for animals at this farm, and other area farms.
  • Total Funded: $8,000

Sin Fronteras Farm & Food – Minneapolis, MN

  • Will transition farm to organic, achieve organic certification, and fund the farm land trust. Will help develop sustainable future for organic farming in the Indigenous/Latino community.
  • Total Funded: $4,000

Steady Hand Farm – Amery, WI

  • Will purchase in-floor, water-based heating system to efficiently operate greenhouse for high quality, early-to-field vegetable starts.
  • Total Funded: $3,797

Sweet Beet Farm – Montrose, MN

  • Will construct packing shed and washing station in existing building. This will create an efficient and food-safe post-harvest handling environment.
  • Total Funded: $4,225

York Farm – Hutchinson, MN

  • Will complete organic table grape vineyard, increasing from 10 to 24 rows, for a total of 1.25 acres of vineyard.
  • Total Funded: $5,875

Past LOFF Recipients

For more information about past LOFF Grant Recipients, follow these links: