Vermont's Farm to Plate  food system plan (2011-2020) is being implemented statewide by the 350+ member organizations of the  Farm to Plate Network to increase economic development and jobs in the farm and food sector and improve access to healthy local food for all Vermonters.
August features updates on the Annual Gathering, Farm to Plate website, and how Vermont is celebrating National Farmers Market Week

2018 Farm to Plate Gathering Registration has Opened!

November 1-2, 2018, Killington Grand Resort 

The Farm to Plate Annual Gathering is the one time each year when the entire  Farm to Plate Network comes together to reflect on what has been accomplished and plan for the challenges that lie ahead implementing  Vermont's food system plan. The theme for this year's Gathering will be  Resiliency in a Changing Food System Landscape. We'll examine as a Network how Vermont's food system can create a greater capacity to learn and adapt, and maintain core purpose and integrity in the face of dramatically changing circumstances (economic, environmental, political etc).  Visit the Farm to Plate Gathering website to learn more and get registered!

Farm to Plate Atlas Updates

This summer, VSJF brought on board Conor Harrington as Food System Atlas Intern.  

Conor is a native Vermonter from East Dorset and rising senior at the University of Vermont where he's studying Community Entrepreneurship and Food Systems. He became interested in Farm to Plate when the strategic plan was referenced in one of his college courses. Farm to Plate is a great way for Conor to explore and learn more about his primary academic interests: business and food. He hopes to start his own business in the future with a social mission that improves the lives of others. 
Conor has been hard at work updating the database for the Vermont Food System Atlas on the Farm to Plate website and building out the new Resources page (find out more below). If you or someone you know is part of an organization or business that isn't listed, it's easy and free to sign-up!

Explore Farm to Plate Resources

If you haven't already, check out the new Resources page on the Farm to Plate website. Think of the page as a food system library covering the gamut of food and agriculture related issues, where you'll find research, reports, worksheets, case studies and more created by network groups and individual network member organizations. You can browse and find resources in a number of ways: (1) search for individual resources by keywords, categories, or network group (2) look through our curated collections where you can find resources related to a particular topic, or (3) get quick access to key documents listed under the Featured Resources heading. We hope the page makes it easier for both Network members and the general public to find and access the significant amount of knowledge created by our members and partners. Let us know what you think and if you have suggestions for resources we should add to the page!

National Farmers Market Week
Alissa Matthews, Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets

Even with changing weather patterns there is no avoiding the fact that Vermont has a relatively short growing season that requires devoted hard work all year to get the abundance of delicious local food to our plates. Now at the height of the season while we get to reap the benefits of that labor there is no better time to honor farmers, to both thank them for their efforts and to remind everyone who picks up a fork to continually support these hardworking friends and neighbors who produce our food and steward the land.

Each year we kick off August with National Farmers Market Week, celebrating the role that direct markets play in creating healthy communities. Farmers markets provide beginning farmers and small value-added producers a low-cost way to enter marketplace and grow their businesses. Local markets put more dollars in farmers' pockets, protect our precious soil and water resources, support rural communities and the connection they share with their urban neighbors, and are a means to ensure a healthy diet and food security for all Vermonters. When it comes to changing the face of our food system, we are truly all in this together, in a year-round process of making farms more viable while improving the quality of life for our families and communities. Many markets are involved in programs that help low-income households purchase more fresh produce from local farms. This year the State-run Farm to Family Program has $143,000 in coupons available for eligible Vermonters to buy locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables at any of the 52 participating farmers markets statewide. NOFA-VT also manages the Crop Ca$h Program which doubles 3SquaresVT benefits spent at farmers markets, so $10 in 3SquaresVT turns into $20 total at each participating farmers market visit. The net result is fresh food access for all Vermonters, despite their financial means, and more money in the pocket of small farmers!
A vibrant local foods community depends just as much on responsible growers and robust markets as it does on informed, involved eaters. All month long there are a variety of opportunities to forge personal connections with local farmers whether it be at one of the 70 farmers markets spread throughout the state, enjoying a view and taste of what goes on behind the barn doors during Open Farm Week, or picking your own fruits and vegetables, cooking a locally grown meal, and preserving some of the harvest for the long winter to come.
#farmersmarketweek #RootedinVermont #lovefoodlovefarms
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Farm & Food Workshops + Industry Events

August 9, Burlington:  Summervale
August 12, Shelburne:  Vermont Cheesemakers Festival
August 13-17, Craftsbury:  Artisan Breadmaking & Heritage Grains
August 16, Burlington:  Summervale
August 23, Burlington:  Summervale
August 30, Burlington:  Summervale
September 6-7, Randolph:  Sausage and Smoking
September 16, Vergennes:  11th Annual Tour de Farms, Hosted by ACORN

Food System Gigs

Cabot Creamery Cooperative,  Sustainability Programs Specialist
Yankee Farm Credit,  Staff Accountant
Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets,  Consumer Protection Section Chief
Vermont Retail and Grocers Association,  Programs & Membership Manager
Confluence Behavioral Health,  Farm and Property Coordinator
Skinny Pancake,  Kitchen Leadership Positions
Food Connects,  Communications Manager
Vermont Sugar Makers' Association,  Communications Manager
Skinny Pancake,  Bar Manager - BTV Airport
Chittenden Solid Waste District,  Latex Paint Recycler
Vermont Agricultural Credit Corporation,  Agricultural Credit Analyst
Vermont Tortilla Company,  Production and Fulfillment Manager
Food Connects,  Food Hub Logistics Manager
The Mountain School,  Chef (who loves farming and kids)
Community Harvest of Central Vermont,  Program Assistant
Vermont Packinghouse,  Production Meat Cutter