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Posts Tagged ‘agriculture’

New Website Connects the Dots Between Food and Tourism

Written by Vermont Life on . Posted in Taste of the Landscape

A news release from DigInVT:

DigInVT web grabThe state of Vermont, the Vermont Agriculture and Culinary Tourism Council and Vermont Fresh Network have debuted, an interactive website that connects visitors and Vermonters alike to nearly 400 authentic Vermont food experiences around the state.

Designed to promote agriculture and tourism, responds to the public’s growing interest in Vermont as a leader in culinary tourism and the development of a local food system that satiates people’s cravings for authentic food experiences. Visitors to will find it easier to learn about locally grown Vermont products, as well as the farmers, producers and chefs behind the food. Offering opportunities to create self-guided Vermont food tours and discover food and farm events, the site engages visitors to keep their experiences fresh. is the first project developed by the Vermont Agriculture and Culinary Tourism Council, a consortium of 13 food producer groups, nonprofit associations, tourism organizations and state agencies who share the goal of promoting tourism that emphasizes experiencing culture through its food and drink.

“Prior to creation of the DigInVT website, no single source and centralized hub existed where food enthusiasts interested in local food could find information about Vermont’s robust cultural tourism opportunities,” said Megan Smith, commissioner of the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing. “ is that one stop, comprehensive resource and it’s poised to bring new visitors to the state’s delectable food experiences, events and establishments that are integral to rural economic development.”

The site was designed and developed with funds from the Vermont Agriculture Innovation Center and John Merck Fund, which was secured by Vermont Fresh Network. “As a funder and a lead organization, we are proud of what this group has accomplished,” said Chuck Ross, secretary of Vermont’s Agency of Agriculture. “This website will position and serve Vermont to attract some of the estimated 160 million Americans whose travel includes cooking classes, food and wine tours, or farm visits; supporting our farms and food establishments that maintain our cherished working lands.”

Developed over two years by Richmond-based Bluehouse Group and branded by Jager Di Paola Kemp Design in Burlington, welcomes your visit.

Go to the Farmers Market When it’s Raining

Written by Melissa Pasanen on . Posted in Taste of the Landscape

Brad Koehler of Windfall Orchard in Cornwall sells wild mushrooms, vegetables, apples and other fruit as well as the orchard's own ice cider at the Middlebury farmers market. Photo by Melissa Pasanen.

Last Saturday was beautiful and the farmers market was calling my name. But, I did not go for various reasons, including the fact that my CSA share has started and I have a freezer stuffed with half a pig’s worth of cuts (that I really need to make a dent in).

I also opted out because I knew the market didn’t need me. On that picture-perfect sunny day, which also fell on the closing weekend of the Discover Jazz Festival in Burlington, there would be plenty of customers at the robust market that now weaves through and around City Park.

The previous weekend, however, I did brave intermittent pouring rain to go to the market knowing that it’s always slow in inclement weather; those are the days that the farmers and other food producers really need customers so they don’t take home half of what they harvested for market.

I love the market in the rain. It’s calmer and the vendors have time to chat about how the season is going, as well as what new projects they’re working on.

And, as my mother always said, “People don’t melt.”

Every year I also vow to visit a few more of the 85-plus farmers markets around the state, a really fun and delicious way to see what’s growing and cooking in corners I don’t frequent. Last year alone, I discovered a wonderful spicy kimchi at the Craftsbury market, locally grown table grapes and goat meat in Middlebury, and Belizean ducunu (cornmeal batter with a sweet corn filling steamed in a corn husk) in Essex.

Even better, more than 40 markets now accept 3SquaresVT (formerly known as food stamps), making home-grown and home-cooked market offerings more accessible to more Vermonters across the state.

For a full list of farmers markets in Vermont go to:

Digging In | How Barber Farm came back from the brink

Written by Vermont Life on . Posted in Uncategorized

The Barber Farm has stood in the town of Jericho longer than the United States has been a country — its soil was first turned in 1774 — but were it not for a chance meeting just over five years ago at a film festival, the farm might have vanished into memory.

The connection happened in Burlington at the Vermont International Film Festival, a rights-and-causes event that had booked a low-budget documentary called “The Barber Farm” (locals often use “the” when describing the place). The film had been made as a labor of love by Gretchen Siegchrist, 33, whose family had deep ties to the land going back to the 1940s. Part homage, part cry for help, Siegchrist’s film outlined the rich history of the farm as well as its current dilemma. It was an exceptional piece of Vermont farmland, but for almost two decades it had lain fallow. With no one willing to farm it commercially, time was running out.

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