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Plan looks to boost agricultural sector

Posted on January 13, 2011 |
By Andrea Suozzo



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MONTPELIER — Agriculture employs an estimated one in six people in Vermont. On Wednesday a statewide economic development organization  released a strategic plan that looks to strengthen this critical component of Vermont’s economy.

The Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund’s “Farm to Plate Strategic Plan” — 18 months in the making — lays out a roadmap to encourage growth and new infrastructure in Vermont’s food and farm sector, create new jobs in that sector, and improve access to healthy, locally produced foods.

full story

Shumlin discusses future of dairy in county

Posted on January 10, 2011 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON — One Tuesday late last month, the Addison firehouse was full of dairy farmers — most from Addison County, and some from farther afield — having a long talk with Gov.-elect Peter Shumlin about the future of farming.

“We needed to see what was coming down the pipe,” said Phil Livingston, a New Haven dairy farmer and co-president of the Addison County Young Farmers group, which organized the event.

He, along with his co-presidents John Chamberlain and Derrick Dykstra, hold monthly events for the group, covering a range of topics related to the dairy business.

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Strong tree sales surprise growers

Posted on December 23, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



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ADDISON COUNTY — Addison County residents who waited until the week before Christmas to buy a tree found it a hard task this year.

Most area vendors reached the end of their Christmas tree supply last weekend, and by Sunday many had closed their doors for the season.

“It was a very early, very fast season,” said Cheryl Werner, who with her family runs Werner Tree Farm in Middlebury.

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Group plots food system revamp

Posted on December 13, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — In today’s international food system, a consumer can get a pound of bananas grown in the tropics at any grocery store for under a dollar. But a local potato? That’s something the average consumer has to do a little work to find.

To the Addison County Relocalization Network (ACORN), however, change is imminent.

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Dean Foods settlement to pay farmers

Posted on December 13, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



BURLINGTON — Some Vermont dairy farmers may soon see some financial relief following a proposed $30 million court settlement by the Dean Foods Company.

The Texas-based dairy processing giant is one of two defendants in a class-action antitrust lawsuit brought by farmers in the Northeast in May. The farmers, who filed the case in the U.S.

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Trust keeps 1,500 acres of farmland open in 2010

Posted on December 6, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



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ADDISON COUNTY — Sid Claflin and his sisters last month signed the papers on a sale that will permanently protect 200 acres of land on their family’s Monkton farm from development.
The parcel of the family’s 325-acre farm is now protected by a conservation easement held by the Vermont Land Trust, which permanently protects the land from development and subdivision.

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Dubois farm running on cow power

Posted on November 18, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



 
ADDISON — The Dubois Farm in Addison this week flipped a switch and brought its methane digester on line.
The $2.6 million digester is expected to generate enough power to run 400 homes, and it will take its place as the 10th working digester in Vermont — including the one at Foster Brothers Farm in Middlebury, which has been in operation since the 1980s.

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County farms yield abundant harvest

Posted on November 15, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — Crop yields were looking good this year for Addison County farmers — by some accounts, better than they have been in many years.

Craig Miner, county Farm Service Agency executive, said that from what he saw, nearly the entire growing season spelled good luck for local farmers.

“It was an excellent season — probably one of the best in recent years,” he said.

Ben Gleason, of Gleason’s Grains in Bridport, agreed. He said the combination of just enough rain and more warmth than last summer meant that his crops did well.

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Gardens blooming in local schools

Posted on October 21, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — The Mount Abraham Union High School garden began its first year at about 600 square feet. Now, as it wraps up its second year, the garden has doubled in size.

Mount Abe is just one of many schools in the county that have been taking the first steps toward incorporating more local food and nutrition education into their curriculums, in some cases bringing academic studies a little closer to technical agricultural programs.

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Film features local beekeper

Posted on October 4, 2010 |
By Tamara Hilmes



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MIDDLEBURY — The independent documentary film that earlier this year created quite a buzz — literally — at film festivals from Rhode Island to Seattle to Maui will make an appearance in Middlebury this week.

“Queen of the Sun: What are the bees telling us?” briefly features Bridport bee expert Kirk Webster and his mite-free colonies in an effort to share an alternative look at what people are calling a “global bee crisis” currently in effect.

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