Our mission is to support the growing regenerative ocean farming economy and make a positive impact on our communities and environment.
Farmer of the Month
This story first appeared in The Island Institute's The Working Waterfront newspaper, and is reproduced here with permission.
Planting and maintaining a garden can help those recovering from addiction. The recovering person learns responsibility while cultivating, nurturing, and investing time and effort, during which the individual grows along with the garden.
Colleen Francke has taken this concept and adapted it to the ocean, planning an aquaculture farm in which women recovering from addiction can heal and grow while cultivating kelp, oysters, and mussels. Francke recently put her plan into motion with the creation of Summit Point Seafood, an aquaculture farm that would operate off Sturdivant Island in Cumberland for women who are in recovery and learning to live without substances. Salt Sisters is the fundraising campaign that supports the project.
Francke is committed to providing women with a safe work environment as they navigate the recovery process and learn about aquaculture.
“I decided in early 2016 to stop using substances to cope with life. During that process, I met a lot of women who helped me through that really difficult transition,” she remembers.
“When I started this process, someone said to me, ‘There are things in your life that alcohol took away from you. What are those things?’ My dream to finish college was one of them, my art was another thing, and going further with aquaculture was another one. So I looked at that and said, ‘I’m going to go for it. I’m going to start taking the steps to do this project and build a farm,’” she says.
Francke, 32, has spent most of her life around the water. Growing up in Eastham on Cape Cod, her first job was cutting fish and cooking lobster at a local fish market. After she moved to Maine, she learned about aquaculture while working on a mussel farm in Casco Bay. These days, she lobsters offshore aboard the Linda Kate out of Portland, while planning the future of Summit Point Seafood and Salt Sisters.
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Products and Services
SGF's operates facilities in Biddeford, ME. We produce raw, blanched, powdered and dehydrated sea greens supplying restaurants, distributors, and food manufacturers throughout North America. Our sea greens are grown by over a dozen independent ocean farms spread throughout New England.
SGF provides farmer support throughout all phases of business development: site selection and design, permitting, harvest, logistics, co-packing, and finance.
SGF operates the largest, most technologically advanced commercial seaweed hatchery in New England, providing independent seaweed farmers a consistently high quality source of seed, in any volume.
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Co-Founder / Director of Operations
David moved to Maine at age three when his father left the military, and other than his own time in the service, has called Maine home. David graduated from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD in 2001 and was commissioned as an Ensign, USN. He reported to Naval Special Warfare Command in Coronado, CA and began Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUD/S) training. After graduating BUD/S class 245 and attending advanced training, David earned his Trident and transferred to an East Coast SEAL Team. Following multiple combat deployments to the Middle East, David returned to Maine with his wife and children. Along with two additional partners, David formed a Holdings company which focused on investing in Maine based companies. While focusing on Maine business, he became a managing partner in Advanced Marine Technologies, which develops and manufactures non-metallic sea chest covers.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Norman serves as Industry Capital's Managing Partner. IC invests in private equity infrastructure assets globally focused primarily on solar energy, power generation and distribution, internet infrastructure and real estate. IC's asset under management are $2 billion. Firm is based in San Francisco with offices in Houston, London and Lagos, Nigeria. In 1999, Norman co-founded Industry Ventures, a $3+ billion venture capital firm specializing in the secondary market, and served as a general partner from 1999 to 2003. Prior to that, Norman was a private and public equity portfolio manager at Eos Partners and Cassandra-Chase Partners in New York, New York from 1995 to 1999. Norman has also held various positions in the commercial lending group at Wells Fargo Bank and in the derivatives group at Lehman Brothers. Norman holds a BA from the University of California at Berkeley and MBA from Columbia University.
Mike Shim is a veteran technology and consumer products entrepreneur, investor and lawyer based in Silicon Valley. He is the CEO of Truth North Cos., a venture operating company building purposeful companies that improve the world through business while delivering superior long-terms returns to their employees, investors and the communities they serve. Mike is a co-founder of New Frontier Foods Inc., makers of "Ocean's Halo" seaweed snacks and continues to serve on the Board of Directors. In addition, Mike serves as a Board member or Advisor of several private companies and non-profits. He received his J.D. from Cornell Law School and B.A. from Georgetown University.