Meat Processing

The Farm to Plate Meat Processing Task Force facilitated collaboration between livestock slaughter and processing stakeholder organizations to coordinate technical assistance and build Vermont’s meat industry. The task force also helped implement, coordinate, and track the Farm to Plate strategies related to meat processing. While challenges in the meat processing industry have evolved since the task force completed its original scope of work, and plans are under way to explore the next phase of meat supply and processing constraints, the work and change they completed and helped to catalyze represents significant positive development in Vermont's meat processing industry. A forthecoming case study will provide insight on the the Meat Processing Task Force's approaches to success and illuminate areas where industry members feel work still needs to be done.

The task force was made up of organizations and industry groups that provide technical assistance or support commercial meat processors. Organizations represented included: 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

The Meat Processing Task Force was the first in the Farm to Plate Network and took on several activities starting in 2011. The task force conducted financial assessments for 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; identified common challenges and issues for industry member; and recommended possible ways that technical service providers can help the industry grow and develop. Task Force also partnered to deliver educational programming, coordinate one-on-one technical assistance, and direct public investment in meat processing. Task force members were also actively involved with planning the New England Meat Conference held 2013 and 2014.

The task force was also featured in USDA ERS report, and associated National Good Food Network webinar.



Gathering the Herd: Vermont Meat Processing Case Study

Gathering the Herd captures lessons learned over a three year period from by the Farm to Plate Meat Processing Task Force through interviews conducted by Carrie Abels with members of the Task Force and industry leaders.

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

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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