Rabobank is a large food and agricultural lender based in the Netherlands that’s making a move in to the primary Canadian agriculture market.
While not new to Canada — the company is celebrating its 25th year in the country in 2023 — the organization has only been lending to the agri-business and agri-processor market. Now, as Roxane Lieverse, head of Canada Agricultural Banking with Rabobank explains, the company will add primary producer lending to its list of services.
As of January 10th, individual farmers, ranchers, and primary producers may qualify for financing products from Rabobank in Canada. The reason for the move, says Lieverse, is the focus on forward population growth in export-depending markets.
“Fundamentally, we’re going to have a population of 10 billion people by 2050. And the only way to get there is to continue to support countries that have an export base, a view that agriculture is part of the core fundamentals of their economy, and working alongside producers that are thinking about sustainabilities, efficiencies, and growth. Canada is well positioned to growing into that space as we try to find ways to feed the world,” she explains, in her recent conversation with RealAgriculture founder Shaun Haney.
The producer journey has really evolved in the last 20 years, especially if we look at what crops we are growing, and how we are marketing them, says Lieverse, which is where the financing solutions piece fits in.
“[The producer] may end up holding that crop here for sometimes two years. Most financial institutions look at that and say, well, you know, you’re only good for one year, and we’re only going to give you one year credit,” she explains. “They’re not thinking about it in the same vein as the producer who is saying, it’s one crop year, and it make take me 24 months, and I need a partner that’s going to support that kind of level of marketing, and is going to work alongside me.”
The second piece of where Rabobank fits in with the Canadian producer is sustainability, as many are wanting to think about their farms differently, says Lieverse, whether that’s being driven by environmental metrics, succession desires, or just being more profitable and efficient.
“Those types of transitions require capital that is patient, that views the long term, and understands where the customer is going to go.”
Learn more in the conversation between Lieverse and Haney, below: