Friday, July 13, 2012

Vermont Farm Fund - Update 2012

July 13, 2012

Thanks to YOU and your contributions, the VermontFarm Fund and the Center for an Agricultural Economy gave out over a dozen loans to Vermont farmers in 2011, totaling $125,000!

The farms you helped are:

Kingsbury Market Garden
Evening Song Farm
Joe’s Brook Garden
Elmore Roots
Jersey Girls Farm
Arethusa Farm
Crystal Springs Farm
Harlow Farm
Hartshorn Farm
Jericho Settlers Farm
Little Village Farm
MacLennan Farm
Sweet Rowen Farmstead

Each farm was approved for a zero percent interest Emergency Loan of either $5,000 or $10,000 and with the exception of Evening Song Farm who is still seeking land, all are back on their feet and farming again!

Sweet Rowen Farmstead, after losing their processing facility last summer, had a grand “re-opening” in Albany on Mother’s Day this year and is selling their gently pasteurized, grass fed milk to local retail outlets including the Capitol City Farmers’ Market in Montpelier.

Kingsbury Market Garden, a two year old farm in Warren, Vermont, lost a good portion of their soil and crop to the storm waters of Irene last August. After receiving the Vermont Farm Fund Emergency loan,, Suzanne and Aaron are back in business, streamlining their operations and enjoying great demand for their products.

Joe’s Brook Farm, located in St. Johnsbury experienced near total losses of their fall crop to Tropical Storm Irene. The timeliness of the VFF Emergency loan allowed them to take advantage of the good spring weather and put the devastating losses of last summer behind them.

On June 1st, we launched the second phase of our Vermont Farm Fund, the Innovative LoanProgram. This loan program will be used to support farms who are innovating to increase the diversity of local foods available in Vermont. This “new” program, the original intention of the Vermont Farm Fund when it was first established in March 2011, was put on the back burner in August 2011, so we could respond swiftly to the needs of our agricultural community when it was devastated by Tropical Storm Irene. With your overwhelmingly generous response, we were able to do exactly that and now, we are excited to begin building a revolving loan fund that will move our food system forward. Now, we will continue to receive donations for the Emergency Loan program alongside the Innovative Loan program.

You make it possible. You are powerful. You provide hope and encouragement to our farmers to keep farming, even after devastating loss. Thank you.

With warm regards,

Monty Fischer,
Center for an Agricultural Economy, Hardwick, VT

Pete Johnson,
Pete’s Greens, Craftsbury, VT

Robin McDermott, Warren, Vermont

Bruce Urie, Craftsbury, Vermont

Vern Grubinger, Brattleboro, Vermont

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