The Farm to Plate Initiative rolled out a 10 year strategic plan for Vermont’s Food System at the State House today. Despite the heavy snows, supporters of the work of the VT Sustainable Jobs Fund turned out to hear program director Ellen Kahler present the initial release of the Executive Summary and supporting statements made by Governor Peter Shumlin, Lieutenant Governor Phil Scott, and members of the VT State Legislature. The comprehensive nature of this plan is something to be admired, breaking the food system down into 7 areas– Consumer Demand, Farm Inputs, Production, Processing, Wholesale Distribution, Retail Distribution, and Nutrient Management (composting and healthy soils). Really a Farm to Plate and back to the Farm Initiative!
The Executive Summary provides and overview of our current food system and goals for
improvement. For new farmers, a read through would be a great education on many topics, including existing markets and their associated challenges.
The VT Sustainable Jobs Fund was commissioned by the 2009 VT State Legislature to complete the work in coordination with the VT Sustainable Agriculture Council. Over 18 months, more than 1200 Vermonters participated in summits, focus groups, and meetings, giving their input on Vermont’s food future. Now we have a road map, and it is our job to make sure we stay on course to a healthy and sustainable food system for Vermont in 2020!