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.

Increasing Local Food Availability and Affordability in All Market Channels

Independent Grocers Task Force Update

The  Farm to Plate Independent Grocers Task Force has been busy focusing its attention on delivering technical assistance to independent grocery store owners, with particular focus in Windham County and the Northeast Kingdom in partnership with Food Connects and Green Mountain Farm-to-School. Since June, 14 stores have received technical assistance focused on product display and merchandising, ordering systems, increasing local product offerings, and improving point of sale (POS) local tracking. Stores are also receiving a Take 5 monthly newsletter that features retail tips and tricks, with seasonally focused merchandising strategies.  This work is addressing retail distribution goals outlined in Chapter 3  of the Farm to Plate Strategic Plan.

Keelers Bay Variety Store Meat Case
Above, at Keeler's Bay Variety in South Hero, Task Force Chair Annie Harlow worked with staff on expanding options for local meat and improving product displays to more prominently identify local products for consumers. Harlow's efforts with Keeler Bay to improve local food labelling aligns with 2017 Vermont Poll results, which found that 62.8% of Vermonters would buy more local food if it was more clearly labeled and identified as local.

At Craftsbury General Store, below, Harlow worked with staff to analyze produce placement to determine if Vermont products could be better placed to increase local food sales. Catherine Cusack of Green Mountain Farm to School accompanied Harlow on the trip to learn more about the retail sales environment and provide information on local products offered through the GMFTS food hub ( Farm Direct).  You can find resources for independent retailers here.

Craftsbury General Store Retail Training

Food Access Planning Task Force Update

The  Farm to Plate Food Access Planning Task Force  has begun work on a new resource to help local and regional planners address food access in their communities. The resource will discuss strategies for involving key stakeholders in the planning process, techniques for incorporating food access within the plans, examples and sample language, additional resources, and more, and will be designed for both professional and volunteer planners and other interested community members. The project team held a kickoff meeting in January and will complete the resource by September.   The Food Access Cross Cutting Team launched this task force to address food access planning gaps at the municipal level, and is part of a broader effort to address Goal 15 of the Farm to Plate Strategic Plan: All Vermonters will have access to fresh, nutritionally balanced food that they can afford.

Farm to Plate Newsfeed

Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund expands business assistance services

Salvation Farms Re-establishes Lamoille Valley Gleaning Program

Flag Hill Farm Works with Vermont Land Trust to Conserve Forest, Orchard, and Trail

CHCV Reaches 100,000 Pounds Gleaned in Four Years

Organic Dairy Farmer Protects Stretch of Rock River

Produce Safety Rule Deadline, High Demand Prompts Second Round of Improvement Grants

New FINE White Papers Explore Local Food Processing in New England

Farm & Food Workshops + Industry Events
Food System Gigs

Intervale Center,  Intervale Land Manager
Philo Ridge Farm,  Sous Chef
Philo Ridge Farm,  Farm Market General Manager
Philo Ridge Farm,  Market Garden Apprentice
Philo Ridge Farm,  Market Garden Crew
Littleton Food Coop,  Part time cook
Cedar Circle Farm,  Farmstand & Coffee Shop Positions
High Meadows Fund,  Program Officer
Middlebury College,  Food and Garden Educator
Kids Gardening,  Executive Director
Shelburne Farms,  Cheesemaker
Hurricane Flats Farm,  Farm Worker
Vermont Compost Company,  Fulfillment and Operations Team Member
Vermont Creamery,  Human Resources Manager