Fully Repaid

Farmland Property And Equipment Purchase

by Saturn's Return
Farmland Property And Equipment Purchase

San Juan Center for Regenerative Economy (SJCRE) is securing a 42-acre site to build out an educational working farm and hub for sustainable agritourism.

Project Summary
  • Location: Friday Harbor, WA
  • Products: Events Fruit & Vegetable Livestock Poultry Perennial Crops
  • Loan Term: 12 months
  • Interest Rate: 5.50% APR
  • Repayments Begin: 1 month after disbursement
100% of $2,863,800

Funded on 06/21/2022


Note: Emma and Wiley’s farm, previously known as the “San Juan Center for Regenerative Economy,” (SJCRE), has now evolved from the temporary name into “Saturn’s Return.” While the name has shifted, the farm, goals, and participants are all the same.

San Juan Center for Regenerative Economy (SJCRE) is an emerging educational working farm and agritourism destination located on San Juan Island in Washington State. Operated by Emma Rastatter and Wiley Webb, SJCRE’s mission is to build a more sovereign, resilient, and equitable food system for the San Juan Islands⏤a community of nearly 20,000 residents that also sees thousands of tourists each year.

SJCRE is purchasing a 42-acre site with existing farmland, wetlands, pasture, forest, and a campus with lodging and office space for visiting guests. They will host community events, student education, and new farmer apprenticeship and training programs, including land access programs with an emphasis on BIPOC farmers. 

Based on principles of agroforestry and restoration agriculture, the ~12-acre working farm will integrate livestock and annuals into their perennial cropping plans. The majority of food will be sold through the San Juan Islands Food Hub, and customers will also be able to pre-order and pick up food directly from the farm, or purchase via an online farm store. 

Emma and Wiley chose San Juan Island because of the island’s deep intergenerational knowledge and the great sense of responsibility that people share to support the local food economy and each other. They intend for the site to be a center for community gathering, agricultural production and education, and native habitat conservation. They are in the process of pursuing a conservation easement that would restore cultural use and harvest rights for local tribes, as well as protect native fish populations. Inspired by cooperative farming models they’ve seen in their travels and past work experience, SJCRE will be a space for collective learning and growth. 

Use of Funds

The short-term bridge loan from Steward will contribute to purchasing the 42-acre site that will be the future home for SJCRE. This is a turn-key property that already includes a 10-bedroom bed & breakfast lodging with a commercial kitchen, four bedroom guesthouse, large barn, stable, and office space. The loan will also fund essential farm equipment to help ensure perennials are planted this fall. 

SJCRE is contributing 20% equity to the property purchase and self-financing initial start-up costs. 

Regenerative & Sustainable Practices

SJCRE is committed to helping build a more sovereign, resilient, and equitable food system on the San Juan Islands. Their three-prong approach focuses on restoration agriculture, community building, and ecological conservation, with practices that include:

  • Employing agroforestry systems that work with nature to maximize yields and minimize inputs. The farm will integrate perennials, intensively managed livestock, and low or no till annuals–supporting the abundance of species across the site’s wetland, forest, and pasture.

  • Pursuing a conservation easement with the San Juan County Conservation Land Bank and partnering with the San Juan Islands Conservation District and Kwiaht (a local ecology non-profit) on habitat restoration efforts and to restore cultural use and harvest rights for Native tribes. The degraded riparian corridor along a stream on the property is the spawning ground of the native cutthroat trout population, one of two remaining in the country.

  • Partnering with WSU Extension on trials for new crops and varieties that thrive in the San Juans, and providing open-source agronomic and economic insights.

  • Providing farmer and student education programs with several partner organizations in the region.

  • Providing land access and shared equipment and infrastructure for local farmers, prioritizing their outreach efforts to BIPOC farmers.

Property Purchase--$2,784,800: This includes 80% of the total property purchase price, legal fees, and a full 12 month interest reserve.

Equipment--$79,000: This includes key equipment needed for fall perennial plantings as well as infrastructure improvements, including fencing and irrigation. 

Total Budget: $2,863,800

This loan will be made to SJCRE LLC, a Delaware limited liability company, which operates as an agritourism hub and educational farm. 

The total loan amount is $2,863,800, which will assist SJCRE in growing and expanding their business.

This is a secured loan with a first mortgage on real property located at  2687 W Valley Rd., Friday Harbor, 98250.

This short term bridge loan is set at a 5.5% interest rate, with a 9 month term, and interest only monthly payments beginning 1 month after the property closing. 

Lender Participation Agreement Download

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