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Exploring the Next Frontier: Increasing Local Food Sales at Vermont's Independent Retailers

"Exploring the Next Frontier: Increasing Local Food Sales at Vermont's Independent Retailers" is a report published by Farm to Plate's Supply and Demand Task Force in order to help grow the independent grocer market in ways that work for retailers, farmers, food producers, and distributors. The report provides an understanding of the kinds of products independent grocery stores currently sell and what real and perceived barriers exist to selling more or different products at independent grocery stores.

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Storage, Aggregation, and Distribution Report for Local Food in the North Country

The goals of this study were to collect data on the distribution and storage of food in the NCIC NH region: Carroll, Coos and Grafton Counties; to assess and identify opportunities to improve efficiency of local food movement; and to increase access to market for local producers.

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Retail Training Collection

The Retail Collection includes resources developed or used by the Independent Grocers Task Force to complement its statewide in-store retail trainings, including the Take 5 video series along with written resources designed to help retailers more effectively source and merchandise local food. Video episode topics include promotions, purchasing, merchandising, in-store displays, signage, sampling, and procurement. The written resources cover purchasing, merchandising, operations, financials, and staffing. Farmers and specialty food producers interested in learning more about best practices in retail merchandising may also find value in the video series.

Retail Training Collection Take 5 Episode 11: Product Sampling

Tips and strategies for running an effective sampling program.

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Retail Training Collection How Do You Rate? Receiving

A worksheet for self-evaluating your receiving operations.

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Aggregation & Distribution

Resources for understanding Vermont and regional food distribution systems, as well as understanding wholesale market opportunities and barriers (e.g., for sales to institutions,schools, colleges, and hospitals, as well as retail grocers).

Aggregation & Distribution Connecting the Dots: Strategies for Aligning Production, Processing, Distribution, and Market Outlets for Vermont’s Food System

Appendix C: Connecting the Dots focuses on the distribution chain that links farm production, processing, and market outlets and provides strategies for aligning these elements of Vermont’s food system more closely. Distribution is defined as the process of delivering food from the primary producer to end consumers, whether they are found at supermarkets, restaurants, schools, farmers markets, community supported agriculture (CSA) farms, or convenience or general stores. Distribution requires organizing transportation and logistics in an economically efficient manner to deliver a marketable mix of products to meet consumer demand. At times, it also requires short-term storage, en route to store shelves.

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Farm to Institution

A collection of resources exploring the world of local food in schools, hospitals, colleges, and other institutions.

Farm to Institution Vermont Farm to College: Opportunities and Barriers to Greater Local Food Procurement in Vermont Higher Education Food Service

Institutions of higher education present an opportunity for increased procurement of locally produced foods. This report provides an overview of findings to date, followed by summaries of successes, innovations, and challenges. Analysis focuses on comparing and contrasting Vermont interview results with recommendations gleaned from other regional institutions’ and organizations’ reports. It concludes with a list of best practices for food service operations and technical assistance providers.

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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.