RSF Makes a New Loan to Hummingbird Wholesale

RSF Makes a New Loan to Hummingbird Wholesale

Multimedia from this Release

Charlie and Julie Tilt

Friday, September 5, 2014 - 11:10am

CAMPAIGN: Financing Announcements


RSF is pleased to announce a new PRI loan to Honey Heaven Wholesale (D.B.A. Hummingbird Wholesale), a bulk food distributor offering high quality organic, local, and regional food crops to wholesale customers from Bellingham, Washington to San Francisco. Hummingbird is located at the southern end of the Willamette Valley in Eugene, Oregon. RSF financing allowed Hummingbird to purchase an environmentally friendly freight truck that will be used for deliveries along the route between San Francisco and Bellingham.

In 2003, Charlie and Julie Tilt purchased Honey Heaven Wholesale and eventually changed its name to Hummingbird Wholesale. Their mission is to serve people and the planet by providing regionally grown, high quality nutritious foods that nourish the body, mind, and soul.

Today, Hummingbird contracts directly with regional farmers whenever possible for organic and transitional staple crops and helps to market these products to consumers. They believe that sourcing locally makes ethical, nutritional, and logistical sense—this practice builds trust, deepens relationships, keeps money in the region, and helps strengthen the fabric of community. They sell over 900 different products including animal feed, honey, beans/legumes, grains and flours, granola, nuts, seeds, sprouting seeds, and spices and teas. In 2012, 50% of total sales came from items processed and grown in the Willamette Valley.

“Hummingbird exemplifies the type of organizations we look to support at RSF as it tries to make a positive impact in every aspect of their work – from ensuring local farmers are connected to markets to employing a zero waste strategy,” says Taryn Goodman, former Director of Impact Investing at RSF. “We are excited to support the organization’s growth and look forward to its continued success.”

In Eugene, Hummingbird uses two cargo tri-cycles to deliver its products; in 2012 an impressive 250,000 pounds of goods were delivered via bike. For deliveries outside of Eugene, the company uses three small trucks. RSF’s financing allowed Hummingbird to purchase an environmentally friendly freight truck that meets California Air Resource Board (CARB) standards, a set of state regulations aimed to lower vehicle emissions.

“With the capitalization of a high-efficiency and low-polluting delivery truck we were able to drastically improve our delivery systems,” says Charlie. “Our new vehicle produces 1/66 of the pollutants of the 2006 diesel truck it replaces and offers a 50% increase in fuel economy.” This new truck will enable Hummingbird to double its current capacity for deliveries to consumers.

“As a socially and environmentally conscious company, Hummingbird Wholesale was delighted to connect with RSF and collaborate,” says Charlie.” Having an economic partner that meets investor needs while accomplishing social good is wonderful! We look forward to a long-term positive relationship with RSF as we grow our impact on the Organic local foods systems in the Pacific Northwest.”

About Hummingbird Wholesale

Hummingbird Wholesale is a distributor of high quality organic bulk foods that incorporates humanity into their business relationships. They are known for their Zero Waste practices and commitment to sustainable choices in all aspects of their business. They choose their products carefully, considering the sustainability of farming practices, nutritional value, and special dietary needs. Whenever possible, Hummingbird buys locally and directly from the farmers.