Our overall approach is centred on understanding and managing risks associated with investing in agriculture. Our process is consistent and incorporates exhaustive procedures throughout the investment cycle.
Before we acquire or invest in a farm, we conduct an intensive due diligence analysis on sellers, leaseholders, farm operators, farms and many other factors relevant to the investment phase. Due diligence includes the following factors:
- Agricultural Site Assessment
- Customer Due Diligence
- Corporate Social Responsibility Due Diligence
- Environmental Site Assessment
- Legal Due Diligence
During the management upgrade and maintenance phase we monitor the farmers, focusing especially on applying good agricultural practices.
We invest in upgrading the farms with the aim of increasing efficiency, productivity and sustainability, and in so doing, we prefer to involve local stakeholders. The primary focus of upgrading is on water, soil and farm infrastructure improvements. Some examples of our farm upgrading activities are:
- Ditch cleaning
- Farm base redevelopment
- Irrigation and drainage
- Lime application and fertilisation
- Plot consolidation
- Removal of asbestos and oil tanks
Rabo Farm Europe Fund I
Rabo Farm is currently going through this cycle with its Rabo Farm Europe Fund I (RFEF I). The RFEF I currently invests directly in arable farms and related infrastructure within the EU, especially in the new member states. Poland and Romania form the focal point of our portfolio, and are where we lease out our farms predominantly to local farmers. We have a local presence in these countries and work with local staff to manage our activities and implement our strategy in close cooperation with our central organisation in the Netherlands.
Rabo Farm Europe Fund II
Rabo Farm will launch a new Fund, the Rabo Farm Europe Fund II (RFEFII ) in 2014. RFEF II is a closed-end fund that will invest in agricultural assets, with a focus on Central and Eastern EU countries. The main strategy of the fund will be on increasing yields. This provides for a sound foundation for the returns we can achieve for our investors. It is supported by real business and real growth in an investment class that will need to grow to ensure a fertile future.