N.Y. county loan program carries on Chobani’s success

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Dairy farmers in Chenango County, N.Y., have a new source of funding available -- thanks to local economic development officials and Greek yogurt manufacturer Chobani. 

The loan program could open doors for many Chenango County dairy farmers, such as John Marshman, enabling them to help purchase new equipment, expand their herds, and invest in new properties, WBNG Action News reports

"Between our equipment, our land base, and our animals, we have a lot of capital invested," said John Marshman, co-owner of Marshman Farms, "And so the ability to get capital in different ways is important."

When Chobani was getting started years ago, it requested and received economic development grants and loans from various governmental entities. So far, it has paid $250,000 back, and that is the reason the new loan fund is starting at $250,000.

"We're starting with $250,000," but it could go higher than that, depending on demand, says Steve Craig, of Commerce Chenango.

Last week, Chobani founder Hamdi Ulukaya announced it was time to “loan back” to keep the dairy industry expanding.

Chobani is a multi-million dollar yogurt producer currently dominating the Greek yogurt industry. The company’s Chenango County yogurt plant uses more than 3 million pounds of milk each day to produce the protein-packed yogurt. Eighty-five percent of this milk is produced by the state’s dairy herds. Read more about Chobani here.

Those interested in applying for the loan fund can contact Development Chenango at (607) 334-5532.

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Carroll Wade    
Jasper, N Y  |  June, 29, 2012 at 07:57 AM

Farmers are being paid about 35% of what they need to have a viable operation and contribute to the over-all economy . These loans can not be paid back if the farmers are continually underpaid for their production. It does make the "loaners " look good to the public's eye and perhaps even make the person doing the loaning feel good . Farmers need a peice that will cover their cost plus give them a profit , just like any other main street business .

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