Meat Processing

The Farm to Plate Meat Processing Task Force facilitates collaboration between livestock slaughter and processing stakeholder organizations to coordinate technical assistance and build Vermont’s meat industry. The task force also helps implement, coordinate, and track the Farm to Plate strategies related to meat processing.

The task force is made up of organizations and industry groups that provide technical assistance or support commercial meat processors. Current organizations represented include: Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont, Farm Viability (VHCB), VEDA-Vermont Ag Credit Corp, UVM Extension, Rural Vermont, Castanea Foundation, Meat and Poultry Processors Association, Sheep and Goat Association, Beef Producers Association, and Grass Farmers Association. Meetings are held monthly and coordinated by the task force chair, who develops agendas and invites guests. Task force members rotate the roles of moderator and note-taker. Meetings typically include a summary of recent activities, a substantive conversation on a timely issue, and updates to share information about how each organization is working on to support meat processing and strengthen Vermont’s meat industry.

The Meat Processing Task Force was the first in the Farm to Plate Network and has taken on several activities since forming in 2011. We conducted a financial assessment four of the seven USDA and state-inspected, commercial, red meat slaughter and processing facilities with the goal of providing these businesses with their own performance indicators and comparative benchmarking information; identifying common challenges and issues; and recommending possible ways that technical service providers can help the industry grow and develop. Task Force members have also partnered to deliver educational programming, coordinate one-on-one technical assistance, and direct public investment in meat processing.

The task force has recently been featured in a recent USDA ERS report, and associated National Good Food Network webinar. Task force members were also actively involved with planning the New England Meat Conference held in March 2013 and plans are underway for the 2014 conference – stay tuned!


Activities

Vermont's F2P Meat Processing Task Force featured by Niche Meat Processors Assistance Network Add to Collection

Vermont's F2P Meat Processing Task Force was featured as a case study in a recent report by the Niche Meat Processors Assistance Network.

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Meat Processing Strategic Planning Retreat Add to Collection

The Farm to Plate Network Meat Processing Task Force held a strategic planning retreat in January at Shelburne Farms to develop strategies for the future of Vermont's meat processing industry.

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