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Group plots food system revamp

Posted on December 13, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — In today’s international food system, a consumer can get a pound of bananas grown in the tropics at any grocery store for under a dollar. But a local potato? That’s something the average consumer has to do a little work to find.

To the Addison County Relocalization Network (ACORN), however, change is imminent.

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Dean Foods settlement to pay farmers

Posted on December 13, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



BURLINGTON — Some Vermont dairy farmers may soon see some financial relief following a proposed $30 million court settlement by the Dean Foods Company.

The Texas-based dairy processing giant is one of two defendants in a class-action antitrust lawsuit brought by farmers in the Northeast in May. The farmers, who filed the case in the U.S.

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Trust keeps 1,500 acres of farmland open in 2010

Posted on December 6, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



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ADDISON COUNTY — Sid Claflin and his sisters last month signed the papers on a sale that will permanently protect 200 acres of land on their family’s Monkton farm from development.
The parcel of the family’s 325-acre farm is now protected by a conservation easement held by the Vermont Land Trust, which permanently protects the land from development and subdivision.

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Dubois farm running on cow power

Posted on November 18, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



 
ADDISON — The Dubois Farm in Addison this week flipped a switch and brought its methane digester on line.
The $2.6 million digester is expected to generate enough power to run 400 homes, and it will take its place as the 10th working digester in Vermont — including the one at Foster Brothers Farm in Middlebury, which has been in operation since the 1980s.

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County farms yield abundant harvest

Posted on November 15, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — Crop yields were looking good this year for Addison County farmers — by some accounts, better than they have been in many years.

Craig Miner, county Farm Service Agency executive, said that from what he saw, nearly the entire growing season spelled good luck for local farmers.

“It was an excellent season — probably one of the best in recent years,” he said.

Ben Gleason, of Gleason’s Grains in Bridport, agreed. He said the combination of just enough rain and more warmth than last summer meant that his crops did well.

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Gardens blooming in local schools

Posted on October 21, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — The Mount Abraham Union High School garden began its first year at about 600 square feet. Now, as it wraps up its second year, the garden has doubled in size.

Mount Abe is just one of many schools in the county that have been taking the first steps toward incorporating more local food and nutrition education into their curriculums, in some cases bringing academic studies a little closer to technical agricultural programs.

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Film features local beekeper

Posted on October 4, 2010 |
By Tamara Hilmes



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MIDDLEBURY — The independent documentary film that earlier this year created quite a buzz — literally — at film festivals from Rhode Island to Seattle to Maui will make an appearance in Middlebury this week.

“Queen of the Sun: What are the bees telling us?” briefly features Bridport bee expert Kirk Webster and his mite-free colonies in an effort to share an alternative look at what people are calling a “global bee crisis” currently in effect.

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Two decades on, farmers weigh organic standards

Posted on September 16, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



ADDISON COUNTY — Since the passage 20 years ago this week of the 1990 Farm Bill, which established a National Organic Program (NOP), the demand for healthy, sustainably produced food has skyrocketed — and with it, the demand for organically certified products.

Consumers nowadays — especially those in cities — don’t always know how or where their food was produced, so organic certifications give them more information to use when making purchasing decisions, said Vermont Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy while marking the anniversary this week.

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For him, bacon is already home

Posted on September 9, 2010 |
By Tamara Hilmes



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LINCOLN — “Why pigs?” was the first question posed to Nate Gusakov, owner and operator of Full Belly Farm located off Quaker Street in Lincoln. His answer was simple and unabashed:

“Why pigs?” he responded. “Bacon, in a word.”

Before he began leasing his 17-acre farm three years ago, Gusakov had been a wandering graduate of Sterling College’s Sustainable Agriculture program and Bristol-native who dreamed of one day operating his own small farm.

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Weybridge author documents dairy farm life

Posted on September 9, 2010 |
By Andrea Suozzo



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WEYBRIDGE — When Weybridge photojournalist and writer George Bellerose asked Grayson Wyman to sum up his life as a dairy farmer, the answer was simple:

“It was 46 years of pretty straight going,” Wyman said.

This became the title statement of Bellerose’s recently published book, “Forty-Six Years of Pretty Straight Going: The Life of a Family Dairy Farm,” which follows brothers Larry and Grayson Wyman through the last years of work on their Weybridge farm before their retirement in 2005.

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