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Takeaways - Farm Transfers - F2P Financing CCT

Takeaways & Next Steps 2/6/19 Farm Transfers Convening: Financing Sticking Points & Solutions Hosted by the VT Farm to Plate Network’s Financing Crosscutting Team

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COVID-19 Support

A collection of resources aimed at providing support for farmers, businesses and organizations in the food system during COVID-19.

COVID-19 Support Covid-19 Crisis Survival Plan for Business Owners from Slow Money Vermont

It is more important than ever to keep your funding partners in the loop on the impacts of the current health/economic crisis on your business, and to engage them in solutions if possible. Following are tips and templated statements to let them know how you’re managing and where they can help.

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COVID-19 Support NOFA-VT Farmer Emergency Fund

NOFA-VT’s Farmer Emergency Fund supports organic and NOFA-VT member farmers who have been adversely affected by natural and unnatural disasters, such as crop failure, extreme weather, flooding, fire, or barn collapse. The Farmer Emergency Fund provides grants and zero percent interest loans to farmers in need as funds are available. There is a growing concern from dairy farmers about what will happen if they get sick with COVID-19 and cannot work. The average age of dairy farmers is almost 60 in Vermont, putting these crucial food providers at increased risk of the disease. Many dairy operations are run by one or two farmers, often in the same family. Dairy farmers are already economically stressed, and we need to show up and stand by our state's farmers at this challenging time. Milking is not the type of work that can pause for a week or two. NOFA-VT is seeking to build a list of people skilled enough to lead milkings on farms for the duration of the sickness. NOFA-VT will make funds available through our Farmer Emergency Fund to pay the relief workers. (If you are not a skilled dairy worker, but you are wanting to show up for Vermont's farmers,…

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COVID-19 Support SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program

Small business owners in all U.S. states and territories are currently eligible to apply for a low-interest loan due to Coronavirus (COVID-19). ACCD is asking any Vermont business impacted by the response to the COVID-19 virus to share these impacts with the Agency through a dedicated email address: commerce.covid19@vermont.gov. In addition, the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act recently passed by Congress expanded the Small Business Act’s definition of a disaster to include Coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result, the SBA will be able to provide Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) under a Governor’s Certification Disaster Declaration. In order for the SBA to consider an EIDL declaration, the Governor must demonstrate that at least five small businesses in a disaster area have suffered substantial economic injury as a result of the disaster. The Agency has also established a hotline so that businesses may call to report impacts and be directed to resources: (802) 461-5143. The hotline will be staffed Monday through Friday, 7:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. For more information on Unemployment Insurance: UI Employer Services - 802-828-4344 For general Department of Labor Questions: Department of Labor Commissioner’s Office – labor.commissioner@vermont.gov

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COVID-19 Support Grassroots Fund Seed Grants Available

The Grassroots Fund is making its rapid response Seed grant program available to grassroots groups responding to local needs and building resilience in their community in response to the COVID19 pandemic and associated events. They commit to making decisions and getting dollars out the door as fast as they can. Grant Range: Up to $1,000 Some examples of use: • Food supplies for isolated community members • Mileage for volunteers dropping off supplies or checking in • Childcare coverage for community members needing support • Support for technology to continue organizing/meeting • Expenses related to rescheduling events • Partnering with local media outlets to continue to educate and raise awareness • Grant applications must respond to a challenge or need in communities as a result of the COVID19 outbreak. • Though the typical Seed grant program is still available (with 4-6 week turnaround time), this rapid response grant is not intended to support ongoing programs and projects. Process: • Available for community-driven efforts (volunteer-driven, guidelines of budget

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Vermont Agriculture & Food System Plan 2021-2030

In 2009 the Vermont Legislature tasked the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund (VSJF) with administering the Farm to Plate Investment Program (10 V.S.A. § 330), to “create a strategic plan for agricultural and food system development, which may be periodically reviewed and updated.” The Farm to Plate Network formed in 2011, and set about implementing the first statewide Farm to Plate Strategic Plan. We came together out of a love for good food, strong communities, and our working landscape, to intentionally support the farmers, food entrepreneurs, and farm and food workers who provide nutritious, delicious food for us all. Over the past ten years, Vermont’s food system economic output expanded 48%, from $7.5 billion to $11.3 billion, which includes $3 billion (26.5%) from food manufacturing—Vermont’s second-largest manufacturing industry. The food system added 6,560 net new jobs (11.3% increase), and more than 64,000 Vermonters were directly employed by over 11,500 farms and food-related businesses. Local food purchases rose from $114 million (5%) to $310 million (13.9%) of the total $2.2 billion spent on food in the state annually, and Vermont farms sold $781 million worth of product per year. Recognizing the success of the first Plan and the continued importance of agriculture and food to Vermont’s economy, environment, and culture, the Vermont Legislature and Governor Scott reauthorized the Farm to Plate Investment Program in 2019.

Vermont Agriculture & Food System Plan 2021-2030 Vermont Agriculture and Food System Plan 2020

In response to the ongoing dairy crisis and other significant changes happening within Vermont’s agricultural and food sector, and a desire to stimulate more rural economic development as well as regional market access for Vermont products, the Legislature passed and Governor Scott signed Act 83 (S.160), an act relating to agricultural development, in May 2019. Section 1 of this Act calls for the development of a report with recommendations to stabilize and revitalize Vermont’s agricultural industry. This report was delivered to the Vermont Legislature in January, 2020. As part of a planned update to the 2011 Farm to Plate Strategic Plan, a second set of 31 product, market and issue briefs, along with a vision for Vermont's food system, a new set of goals, objectives and indicators of progress will be published in February 2021. Titled the Vermont Farm to Plate Strategic Plan 2021-2030, it will serve as our guiding implementation document over the next 10 years.

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Vermont Agriculture & Food System Plan 2021-2030 Food System Financing Inventory

A listing of capital providers who help to finance farm and food businesses, including debt, equity, and royalty financing, as well as various grant programs. The inventory is a supplemental document to the Vermont Agriculture & Food System Strategic Plan 2021-2030 as requested by the Vermont Legislature as part of Act 83/S.160 (2019). The full Plan can be found here: https://agriculture.vermont.gov/document/vermont-agriculture-and-food-system-plan-2020 If any of the information contained in this directory needs to be updated or is missing, please email relevant information to info@vtfarmtoplate.com and we will make corrections. Version 2021.2

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Farm Viability

A collection of resources aimed to aid farmers and technical assistance providers in strengthening the financial performance and viability of farm and food businesses.