By CYRUS LEVESQUE
ADDISON COUNTY — Vermont’s top agriculture official said he is in favor of weaning the state’s dairy farmers from synthetic growth hormone, but he expects milk processors to help them do it.
Dean Foods and H.P. Hood Inc. have both announced recently that they would no longer accept milk from cows that have been treated with rBST (recumbent bovine somatropin), an artificial form of a naturally occurring hormone. Vermont Secretary of Agriculture Steve Kerr this week said he welcomed the change but said that the processors should compensate farmers for going without the hormone.
rBST, developed and marketed by Monsanto Corp. under the name Posilac, increase milk production by an average of 10 extra pounds per day.
By JOHN FLOWERS
MIDDLEBURY — Members of the Middlebury Business Association (MBA) on Tuesday urged selectmen to put pressure on the Vermont Agency of Transportation (AOT) to make sure that next year’s scheduled repaving of downtown roads does not choke off customer traffic to local stores.
More than 20 downtown business owners packed the board’s conference room to voice their concerns about the state’s plans in 2007 to mill and repave Main Street from the Middlebury Congregational Church to the Cornwall town line; Route 125 (College Street) from Main Street to the Cornwall line; and Route 7 from Creek Road to just north of High Street.
The state has budgeted for the multi-million-dollar project to occur within the fiscal year 2008, which begins on July 1, 2007. Local merchants fear a late summer/early fall work schedule, which would coincide with one of the most lucrative shopping periods of the year.