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Vermont Fresh Network Presents The Great Vermont Picnic

Celebrate the farmer-chef connection across the state this August with a picnic.

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Apply for the Vermont Family Farmer of the Month Award! Applications Due September 11th

Applications for the Vermont Family Farmer of the Month Award are now open.

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Green Mountain Farm-to-School Launches New Initiatives to Fight COVID-19 Food Insecurity in the Northeast Kingdom

Green Mountain Farm-to-School (GMFTS), a small nonprofit organization seeks to mitigate COVID-related food insecurity and promote the use of local food in the Northeast Kingdom through various new and emerging initiatives. This includes running a free summer meal site for children 18 and under all summer long, facilitating a “Market Basket” produce give away featuring crops grown in GMFTS’s own school gardens, and distributing fresh, local food to area food pantries through Green Mountain Farm Direct (GMFD), a local food hub run by GMFTS.

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USDA grants Food Connects Funds for local food system development

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded $99,990 in funding to Food Connects in its latest round of awards. One of two Vermont grantees, Food Connects will leverage these funds to develop new supply chains focused on meeting the needs of school nutrition programs.

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Peaceful Harvest Mushrooms: VCLF Borrower Cultivates Health & Wellness Vermont Community Loan Fund Lends $1,371,936 So Far in 2020

Karen and Brian Wiseman carefully cultivated their careers. Both spent years at Boston-area bio-tech and pharmaceutical companies, dedicated to the advance of health, wellness and medicine. “I was a chemical engineer, working on the early development of protease inhibitors, now used to treat HIV,” Karen recalls. At another point, she managed multi-million-dollar projects for the pharmaceutical giant where she met fellow employee Brian. But, as the Wisemans’ Peaceful Harvest Mushrooms website explains it: “…we wanted to weave the fabric of our lives back together in a different way; one that was truly in line with our values.” So it was that in 2010, Karen recounts, that they left their big jobs and home in southern New Hampshire to become mushroom farmers in central Vermont. “Our friends thought we were crazy.”

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Sterling College Farm Creates Food Hub to Help Small Growers and Reduce Food Insecurity

SNAP Benefits for CSA, Food from Micro-Local Producers, and Seed Library

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School Lunch Programs Keep Milk Flowing with Grant Support

New England dairy farmers, along with other generous partners, have provided school meal programs across New England nearly $255K in total grants and equipment to date. The schools we’ve supported are serving over 1 million meals and milks per week. That’s an estimate of over 10 million meals being provided to students in these communities since schools closed. Below are more details about the grants provided:

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New Chapter’s Impact on Local Food Systems

New Chapter®, a Brattleboro-based wellness company, is leaving a lasting impact on the local food systems by being Food Connects highest-level corporate sponsor. New Chapter’s® donations in 2019 have paved the way for the most successful first half of the year in Food Connects’ history.

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School meals continue through the summer: WSESU looking for volunteers to help with the effort

The Vermont Summer Food Service Program kicked off on June 22. For school kitchens throughout the state, that means continuing serving thousands of meals a week to their communities’ children. In the Windham Southeast Supervisory Union (WSESU), they can’t do it alone. While school staff are the backbone of the operation, the program can’t operate without volunteers helping with food preparation and working at the distribution sites.

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Northeast Kingdom farm to grow additional food for anyone in need

The Vermont Land Trust, in partnership with the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps and ShiftMeals, a program that provides healthy food to people affected by the COVID-19 economic crisis, are working together to ensure that an acre of land at Bluffside Farm in Newport will increase food production and food access in the Northeast Kingdom. Two open houses for interested volunteers and community members will be held at Bluffside Farm on July 2 — from 10:30 to 11:30 am and again from 5:00 to 6:00 pm. To learn more or sign up as a volunteer visit, www.shiftmeals.org/join-our-grow-team.

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