An interesting conversation with Ethan Steinberg, Jeremy Kaufman and Harry Greene, the co-founders of Propagate Ventures, who are scaling up agroforestry to every farm. Our conversation ranged from chestnuts to crowdfunding and how to get more impact investors into the agroforestry space.
LISTEN TO THE CONVERSATION ON:
The reason to start Propagate:
For most farmers putting their money in treecrops for a long term investment was too risky
Why is Propagate working with companies? They can bring purchasing power and with purchase agreements lower the risk of planting trees.
Similar how Solar Power Purchase Agreements have changed the solar industry and got large institutional investors onboard.
Example on how Propagate is working with a natural cosmetic company and their purchasing influence:
Pre purchase agreements are key to allow to create some certainty for the farmers to put trees in the ground long term.
The cosmetics Oneka Schampoo company, going from carbon offsetting to carbon insetting.
So what about retail investors?
Propagate is very interested in retail investors but feels it is too early to start catering to them, despite the huge interest from consumers to invest.
They like Wunder solar, which isn’t for retail investors either but has lowered the barrier to enter significantly.
Chestnuts?! Why are they so interested in them? “like corn which grow on a tree!”
Propagate explaining why Chestnuts are amazing:
- There used to be 4 billion American chestnut trees, but they all disappeared
- Chilean Chestnuts: Studying the South
Other links we mentioned in the conversation:
Interview with Les Szabo, head of constructive finance at Dr Bronners
[As you will hear, we suffered from a bad internet connection which resulted in a lower sound quality. Sorry for that!]
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