Largest organic farmland fund manager in the US earns #1 ranking among all global firms by leading ESG-ratings firm HIP Investor
Investor-focused report shows quantified sustainability benefits from carbon-negative, people-positive agriculture investing, while providing exposure to the attractive risk-return characteristics of organic farmland
SAN FRANCISCO – February 18, 2021 – Investors seeking competitive financial returns with positive environmental, social and governance (ESG) impacts are finding both in Farmland LP, the largest organic farmland fund manager in the U.S., which today announced it earned the highest corporate-sustainability rating awarded by HIP Investor Inc., a leading ESG and sustainability-ratings firm.
The 82.0 rating (of a possible 100) places Farmland LP as #1 in HIP Investor’s worldwide corporate universe of 10,000 corporations, as well as at the top of the agricultural real estate investment trust (REIT) category, the closest comparable peer group.
“Our job at Farmland LP is to manage farmland and maximize its value, productivity and profitability—from acquisition through the life of the investment—all from the foundation of healthy soil biology and happy plants, ” said Craig Wichner, Founder and Managing Partner of Farmland LP. “Our globally-high HIP rating reflects our 10 years of focusing on a meaningful mission: a sustainable planet, fairly paid and rewarded employees, certifications by expert organizations, and regenerative farmland best practices. We also deliver compelling financial returns, providing a strong double-bottom-line performance for our investors.”
“Farmland LP is delivering a carbon-negative, people-positive business model,” highlighted R. Paul Herman, CEO of ESG experts HIP Investor Inc. “Farmland LP’s sustainable and regenerative farming approach yields lower carbon, lower waste and fewer environmental impacts, while simultaneously fertilizing farmers wealth with higher wages and benefits and cultivating a diverse workplace inclusive of women and people of color. In turn, Farmland LP achieves the top HIP Rating overall globally, naturally leading its industry, geography and size.” A list of the top 10 HIP Ratings by asset class, geography, market-cap size and sector is available at: www.HIPinvestor.com.
As an active property owner and manager of more than 15,000 acres in California, Oregon and Washington, Farmland LP pursues higher annual revenues and profits from farmland by developing a diversified mix of organic, permanent and high-value crops. With unique expertise across agriculture, soil biology, real estate and farm management, the firm has increased the long-term value of farmland and delivered returns for investors while achieving tangible sustainability benefits to people, planet and trust.
Farmland LP also announced plans to issue a $115 million bond, which meets the criteria of a “sustainability bond” under the 2018 ICMA Sustainable Bond Guidelines. Global issuance of sustainability bonds is expected to reach $125 billion this year, according to Moody’s Investors service.
U.S. farmland has a market value of $2.7 trillion, with 40% of farmland leased, according to the USDA, a figure that is comparable to the value of all the office buildings in the U.S., yet it has little institutional ownership today despite its attractive investment characteristics. Farmland compares favorably to other asset classes (e.g., stocks, bonds, REITs), having delivered top-decile returns with a low standard deviation, according to the TIAA Center for Farmland Research.
After double-bottom-line success in its Fund I, Farmland LP is on target to close its Fund II in 2021. Fund II owns 6,000 acres in Washington state, plus an additional 2,300 acres of farmland in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, over half of which is already producing certified organic products. The crops comprise more than a dozen annual and perennial crops in rotation, and permanent crops including organic blueberries and several wine grape varieties. To learn more and explore investing, visit www.FarmlandLP.com.
About Farmland LP
Farmland LP is a leading investment fund that generates returns by converting conventional farmland to organic, sustainably managed farmland. Founded in 2009, Farmland LP manages over 15,000 acres of high-quality farmland and more than $175 million in assets, with a focus on enhancing the value of farmland to generate competitive, risk-adjusted returns while demonstrating and quantifying the positive benefits farmland can provide for human and ecosystem health, biodiversity, water, and climate change. To learn more and explore investing, visit www.FarmlandLP.com.
About HIP Investor
HIP Investor Inc. (HIP = Human Impact + Profit), founded in 2006, delivers sustainable, responsible, and impactful ratings and solutions to investors and issuers pursuing human, social, and environmental results. HIP produces and licenses 130,000 sustainability, ESG, and SDG ratings of investments of all types, including more than 10,000 corporations globally (applicable to both equities and fixed income bonds), more than 119,000 municipal bond issuers, obligors, and impact entities, and more than 1,000 mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and separately managed accounts (SMAs). To learn more and explore ESG ratings across stocks, bonds, and funds, visit www.HIPinvestor.com.
Click below to see the full Farmland LP HIP report.
For Farmland LP:
The Totenberg Group
For HIP Investor, Inc.:
R. Paul Herman