Prep series to launch a socially innovative agri-food initiative


The Flourish series was created to support project leaders of socially innovative agri-food  initiatives in the pre-start-up and start-up phases that have socio-ecological impact at the heart of their mission. 

This series was designed to empower project leaders in order for them to more easily manage the challenges of these early stages, including surrounding oneself with the right people and preparing to adapt when things don't go as planned.


Overall objective
  • Support high potential, innovative, economically viable entrepreneurial projects with positive social impacts, accelerating the transition to a sustainable food system.
Objectifs spécifiques 
  • To equip entrepreneurs and project leaders to launch or solidify their initiative by :
  • focusing on financing, and particularly emergent financing options;
  • addressing useful and important topics, specific to the agri-food sector, which complement the events and topics offered by other resources / ecosystem partners
  • Sharing useful knowledge for developing networks within Montreal’s agri-food social innovation ecosystem.

Who is the program for?

  • Socially innovative agri-food projects or businesses in pre-start-up or start-up phase
  • Entrepreneurial or intrapreneurial projects (i.e. projects within organizations)
  • People interested in agri-food social entrepreneurship

Cost of the series

  • 1 session - 15 $
  • 3 sessions - 40$
  • 5 sessions (entire series) - 64$

Why are these paid events?

To be able to properly compensate the experts and entrepreneurs who will be sharing their time and expertise with you us, contributing to your progress and saving you time!


“Social innovation in agri-food consists of a new idea, approach or intervention, a new service, a new product, or a new law, a new type of organization in the food ecosystem that promotes, more adequately and more sustainably than existing solutions, the establishment of a sustainable food system, a solution that has found traction within an institution, organization, or community, and which produces a measurable benefit for the community and not just for certain individuals.”

Source: Codefinition from Récolte (2019). Innovation sociale au menu (French only). p.28, and inspired by the Déclaration québécoise pour ’lIS, RQIS, 2011


***The Flourish series is currently only offered in French.****  

Equipping Yourself to Become an Entrepreneur of Change

Tuesday, October 26, 2021, 9:00am to 10:30am


This workshop aims to highlight the commitment required to become an entrepreneur in the agri-food sector, in order to  and how to equip yourself to make the most of this exciting adventure! Through two exercises, you will learn more about yourself as an entrepreneur and the resources available in your network. 

Presenter : 

Benjamin Ouanson

Social Financing for Agri-Food Enterprises

Tuesday, November 2, 2021, 12:00pm to 1:00pm


This webinar will give you an understanding of how to launch and succeed with your crowdfunding campaign. It will address questions about funding needs assessment as well as community engagement and communication: the cornerstone of any campaign. It will conclude with feedback from a project leader who successfully ran a crowdfunding campaign.

Speakers :

Erwan Dufour, Ma Belle Terre

Marie Daudelin, Le Mangeoir


Claire Lanctôt, Les Jardins d'Arlington

Financing of Collective Enterprises by Community Bonds or Shares

Tuesday, November 9, 2021, 12:00pm to 1:00pm


Community bonds are fairly new as a financing tool and therefore not necessarily well known. This webinar is for those who are curious about this innovative financing option, as well as any  NPOs  interested in starting a community bond campaign. This webinar will also address the topic of shares in co-op financing.

Microcredit for Agri-Food Start-ups

Tuesday, November 16, 2021, 12:00pm to 1:00pm


Start-ups often have limited access to conventional loans, which is why microcredit may be an interesting option. This webinar will discuss the objectives, benefits, and cycles of microcredit as well as key questions to ask yourself before opting for this financing tool.

Speakers :

Indu Krishnamurthy de Microcrédit Montréal

Fail Forward: Lessons from the World of Social Innovation Through Food

Tuesday, November 23, 2021, 4:30 pm to 6:00pm


Failure is an inevitable part of life, essential to learning and growing, especially in the world of startups and innovation. Come learn from the lived experience of other entrepreneurs in the food space, to understand why you shouldn't be afraid to fail and how mistakes can be used as opportunities.

Facilitator : 

Geneviève Vézina Montplaisir, Magazine Caribou

Speakers : 

Andréanne Laurin, 
Épiceries LOCO

Éric Bieunais, Lola Rosa

Pascal Hudon, Pascal Le Boucher

Stéphanie Wang, Le Rizen

Partner :


Below is a list of events by our collaborators, complementary to the content in the Flourish series to support you through the start-up process:

Panel on Legal Structures

Tuesday October 5th 2021, from 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Impact Investment

Wednesday November 10th 2021, from 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Financing : Basics for a Good Strategy

Wednesday November 17th 2021, from 12:00pm to 1:00pm


It is possible to register for each event individually by clicking on "register" under the event details. 

NOTE: It is also possible to register for subsequent events in the individual events, but not for previous events. 

To register for the entire series, or multiple events, you can fill out the following EventBrite form :   


Andréanne Laurin

Exective director and cofounder, ÉPICERIE LOCO

Andréanne Laurin, co-founder and general manager of LOCO ecological and zero waste grocery stores. LOCO is the first zero waste grocery store chain in Quebec and now has 4 branches in Villeray, Verdun, Brossard and Ahuntsic. With a bachelor's degree in marketing communication and a master's degree in environmental sciences from UQAM, Andréanne launched LOCO grocery stores with three colleagues in order to offer a healthy, local, seasonal grocery basket that is good for your health, the environment and the local economy!

Benjamin Ouanson

Coach, social entrepreneurship

Benjamin has worked in the food industry for several years, first in Australia and now in Montreal. His awareness of environmental and social issues guides him in his thoughts, choices and decisions on a daily basis. He is looking for solutions and alternatives in order to promote local and responsible production. Passionate about entrepreneurship, Benjamin supports people in the development of their businesses or their personal growth.

Charles Gagnon


Mr. Gagnon holds a master's degree in Law and Collective Enterprise Management and has expertise in concerted territorial development, as well as in the support and financing of social economy initiatives.He has 20 years of experience in the social economy, including more than 15 in supporting businesses and movements, particularly within a Community Economic Development Corporation Corporation de développement économique communautaire, CDEC)He has been a development agent at the Chantier de l'économie sociale since 2016, where he is notably in charge of supporting new niche markets, the creation of new tools to meet the needs of businesses, as well as the design of new public policies in favor of of the social economy.


Claire Lanctôt

Owner and partner, Arlington Gardens

Éric Bieunais

Co-owner, lola rosa

With a university education in business and marketing, Eric quickly changed careers to return to a passion developed during his years of study. He chose the restaurant business in which he has worked and flourished for over 25 years. Owner of 4 classic and plant-based restaurants. He has made the environment a personal and business goal. With the future of future generations at heart, he is looking for methods and solutions that combine sustainable development, local work and plant-based eating to prepare for the ecological revolution. 


Erwan Dufour

founder, ma belle terre

Lover of beautiful products and passionate about entrepreneurship, Erwan has worked for nearly 10 years in the organization, conceptualization and marketing of culinary events in Europe and Quebec. Captivated by Quebec terroir and concerned about the challenges facing the agri-food sector, he founded Ma Belle Terre in January 2021, the first crowdfunding platform entirely dedicated to agricultural and food projects in Quebec. Through his work, he endeavours to make a unique contribution to the the development of a more sustainable and autonomous agricultural system in Quebec.

Geneviève Vézina-Montplaisir

Co-author and Co-editor in Chief of Caribou Magazine and Associate at Cervidés

Geneviève Vézina-Montplaisir has been a journalist for more than a decade and has focused her practice on gastronomy. Witnessing the effervescence of Quebec's culinary and agri-food scene in recent years, Geneviève was inspired to address its issues through a different medium, co-founding Caribou magazine in 2014. Since then, Caribou has established itself as the benchmark for independent media dealing with food differently and continues its mission to shine a light on Quebec's culinary culture by creating multiplatform content that informs and tells stories.


Indu Krisnamurthy 

Executive director, microcrédit montréal

Indu Krishnamurthy is the Executive Director of Microcredit Montreal, a microcredit organization for immigrant entrepreneurs and professionals. A McGill-HEC Montreal EMBA graduate, she has a solid background in banking, business management, corporate relations and strategic planning. She sits on the Board of Directors of PME-MTL Centre-Ville and the Social Development Investment Committee of Centraide of Greater Montreal.

Marie Daudelin

Co-owner, Le Mangeoir

In 2020, Guillaume and Marie left Montreal and moved to St-Anicet to open their agrotourism farm. Their mission is to become self-sufficient in food and to educate the public about the modern food chain. In April 2021, they launched their very first crowdfunding campaign on Ma Belle Terre to raise $10,000. Their goal was surpassed, they reached $12,000! 


Marie Lacasse

Strategic Project Management Consultant, CQCM

Marie Lacasse worked for 16 years as a coordinator and co-founding member in an eco-food logistics hub for a producer cooperative. Over the past 20 years, she has acquired varied experience in organic agriculture, sustainable development, territorial development and consultation. She has been a member of various boards of directors of local and regional development organizations. She is currently a strategic project management consultant at the Conseil québécois de la coopération et de la mutualité since 2019. She is interested in cooperative issues in agri-food, health, housing, circular economy and everything related to participatory financing by the community.

Pascal Hudon

Owner and founder, Pascal le boucher

Pascal Hudon holds a certificate in management and socio-cultural practice of gastronomy from UQAM. He has been a butcher for 25 years and owns Pascal le boucher. His studies and personal experiences have led him to develop an expertise in various food-related issues (environmental, cultural, tourist and economic), particularly those related to meat consumption. His neighborhood business in Villeray is part of the neo-butchery movement and offers products directly from local breeders who work with the greatest respect for animals and their role in maintaining biodiversity. It has a keen interest in soil regeneration, dynamic and sustainable occupation of the territory as well as local food in all seasons, taking into account its northern character.


Stéphanie Wang


Stephanie is born in Montreal from Cantonese parents that grew up in Madagascar. Her mother was passionated by gardening, organic food and travels. After studying sociology of agriculture, working and woofing on organic farms, and working with farmers' organizations affiliated with the global peasant movement La Via Campesina for the past 5 years, Stephanie finally decided to start farming. Because food sovereignty starts here and now, and because we need more small farmers to feed our communities.


Stay tuned for important dates and developments through our latest news.

NOTE : Most of our news are published only in French.

Floraison | Retour sur les ateliers du 2, 9 et 16 novembre 2021

Au cours des trois premières semaines de novembre, Récolte a organisé des webinaires à l’heure du lunch sur les outils de financement émergents dans le secteur bioalimentaire…


Below is a list of external resources that can help you find the key elements needed to start your agri-food initiative:

Toolkit for start-ups in agriculture and agri-food


In collaboration with

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