Battle Creek’s Sunlight Gardens Wins Business Bootcamp Pitch Competition

November 7, 2016

Receives $10,000 Award from Michigan Good Food Fund

BATTLE CREEK, MICH. November 7, 2016—Battle Creek’s Sunlight Gardens was triumphant in yesterday’s Business Bootcamp pitch competition, the capstone event in a three-day intensive training sponsored by the Michigan Good Food Fund. This Washington Heights-based urban farm aims to cultivate better health and consciousness through growing and educating the community about wholesome and locally grown food.

Sunlight Gardens won a $10,000 award, which it will use to purchase a tractor to boost production.

In its first year of operation, Sunlight Gardens sold at the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo farmers markets, as well as a neighborhood farm stand run by Sprout Urban Farm. It is owned by Olivia Jayakar and Devon Wilson.

“This Bootcamp was a great opportunity to network with other entrepreneurs in the community and grow our understanding of how to run a business,” said Jayakar. “Beyond the tractor, which will be a huge support, the knowledge we got around entrepreneurialism is going to help us go into our second year strong.”

“There is great entrepreneurship in the Battle Creek community,” said Oran B. Hesterman, president and CEO of Fair Food Network, a core partner with the Michigan Good Food Fund. “It was an honor to work with all six entrepreneurs and help match their passion with business acumen so they can be successful in the marketplace.”

Other participating Battle Creek entrepreneurs included: EZ 2 Go Salads & Wrap, Farmers on the Move, Great Scott Ice Cream, Green Gardens Farm, and Torti Taco.