This April, Farm Credit of the Virginias, a customer-owned financial cooperative with a legacy of supporting rural communities and agriculture, delivered record-breaking patronage dividends to customer-owners totaling $40 million.
As a cooperative, Farm Credit returns a portion of its year-end profits to customer-owners. Each year, the organization’s board of directors approves a patronage dividend based on operational goals of the cooperative with the desire to return as much cash patronage as possible.
This year, the board voted to increase the amount of cash patronage to be paid to $40 million, comprised of $30 million in general patronage distribution with an additional $10 million in “special” patronage as a result of a distribution that FCV received from our wholesale funding bank, AgFirst Farm Credit Bank.
“We are proud to be one of the few financial institutions that directly rewards its customer-owners for their loyalty and thank them for the business in a very tangible way” shared Peery Heldreth, CEO of Farm Credit of the Virginias.
“The patronage dividend program also helps reduce our customers’ effective cost of borrowing and returns money directly to the communities we serve. Our board of directors understands the critical role Farm Credit plays in sustaining our agricultural industry and our rural communities. We are owned by the farmers and agribusinesses that we serve, and paying patronage is an important part of the value we deliver,” Heldreth concluded.
Since 2015, Farm Credit of the Virginias has paid more than $100 million in patronage dividends to its customer-owners.