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Working Lands Enterprise Board announces FY 2022 grants

Working Lands Enterprise Board announces FY 2022 grants
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Investing more than $2.1 million in agricultural and forestry businesses in Vermont

Scott Farm of County Windham – Received a grant of $24,999 to develop value-added products.

Vermont Business Magazine The Working Land Program announces historic funding for people who make a living off the land. The program provided $2.1 grants that will help grow agriculture and small businesses in Vermont. This latest round of funding will address meat slaughter and processing bottlenecks, supply chain resilience, marketing plans and overall business development.

Awards from this program also support the farmers, producers, markets and cooperatives that make up our food system; The lumberjacks of Vermont, the foresters and forest products companies that manage our natural resources; and service provider organizations that help strengthen our supply chain.

Under the leadership of Governor Phil Scott and the legislature, a total of $5.294 million has been allocated to the working land program this year. Another $3.2 million grants to the Working Land Program will be announced in the spring.

“The Working Land Program continues to emphasize impacts on a variety of agribusiness and forestry businesses, including funding for organizations that provide viability assistance with a focus on institutions that build executive business skills,” said program leader Lynn Ellen Schimuler. “This initiative supports Vermont entrepreneurs by providing financial assistance to help businesses create jobs, build infrastructure, and foster growth in economies and communities in Vermont’s business landscape.”

So far this year, businesses and organizations in operating lands in the following categories will receive the Workland Foundation Program Awards: (Please follow the link in each category to view the individual companies receiving the 2022 program funds.)

Grants include funding to help with commercial and financial planning, business responses to COVID-19, organization transitions to next-generation and post-succession business owners, access to capital, manufacturing or process flow efficiencies, and more.

Addison County

Addison County Resettlement Network (ACORN)

$20,000 for a Champlain Valley Food Hub business plan and feasibility study.

Chittenden County

Women and Enterprise Center

$20,000 for business planning for women-owned working land companies in Vermont.

Vermont Grape and Wine Council

$12,000 to create an American Viticultural Area (AVA) for Champlain Valley in Vermont.

Northeastern Organic Agriculture Association – Vermont

$82,017 for a series of business development services for early-stage farmers.

Paul, Frank and Collins

$100,000 to build executive business skills for operating land companies.

Washington County

Fairmont Relief Group

$20,000 to develop culturally relevant technical assistance for operating land institutions led by BIPOC.

Vermont Community Loan Fund

$150,000 for SPROUT Low-Interest Loan Program for Startup Owners of Land Operating in Vermont.

Vermont Housing and Conservation Council – Forest Economics

$99,965 to expand access to forest economy business assistance services.

Vermont Council on Housing and Conservation-Agriculture

$97,722 Build resilience in the agriculture sector through executive business and marketing skills.

Northeastern forests

$65,000 for the Business Internship Program and Fairmont Forest Business School.

Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund

$100,000 to develop the supply chain for beef crossbreds on dairy products.

Grants help companies with larger facilities to increase production, processing and/or distribution, address existing known bottlenecks, market development, marketing plans and/or sales strategies, as well as on-the-job training or apprenticeship opportunities, HCAAP (Food Safety) plans and their implementation, management Inventory, procurement and pricing, basic meat cutting and processed meat operation, case-ready product cutting and packaging, value-added processing, equipment infrastructure, and more.

Addison County

Vermont Livestock Supply and Slaughter Co.

$100,000 to renovate the facility.

Bennington County

Southshire Mets, LLC

$74,761 to improve and expand the Higley Hill processing facility in Wilmington.

Caledonia Province

Northeast processing kingdom

$104,028 for safety and efficiency upgrades for slaughter floor and chimney.

Chittenden County

Adam’s farm Turkey

$100,000 to modernize and expand the farm.

Rutland County

farm straw

$95,259 for a standard meat plant.

Washington County

Babette table

$95,345 Smoker and Packaging Machine to increase capacity and efficiency for smoked ham products and expand on pig farms in Vermont.

Windsor County

Royalton meat

$50,032 to expand Smoker’s operations through training.

Grants benefit Vermont-based non-profit association groups of producers that represent and promote Vermont’s agriculture, food, beverage, forest, or fiber products.

Bennington County

Vermont Sheep and Goat Association

$20,000 for a market supply chain research and development grant for small ruminant producers.

Chittenden County

Fairmont Fresh Network

$19,400 for resilience and recovery: developing connections, skills, and partnerships.

Vermont Organic Farms

$20,000 for Back-to-Basics Organic Digital Marketing Campaign.

Vermont farm office

$20,000 for technical equipment upgrades to support membership expansion.

Franklin County

Vermont State University and College of Agriculture

$9,900 to grow Vermont’s growing grain economy through strategic planning, website and logo.

Franklin and Grand Isle Farmer Watershed Alliance

$10,754 to refocus and reconfigure the alliance.

Orange County

real organic project

$20,000 to promote the project poster.

Rutland County

Vermont Woodlands Society

$10,000 for transition and strategic planning for navigating change.

Washington County

Vermont Grass Farms Association

$15,500 to increase market acceptance of grass-fed beef by improving the industry’s understanding of the origins of flavors.

Cheese Board of Vermont

$1,050 to expand funded marketing capabilities and capabilities.

County Windham

Connecticut River Watershed Alliance

$20,000 to develop the strategic plan.

Grants to land companies operating to grow markets, develop marketing plans and sales strategy, and enhance production and/or manufacturing and research and development efficiencies; and/or infrastructure improvements.

Addison County

Rolling Bell Farm, LLC

$24,999 to work on the cream site and build hay barns.

pasture meeting place

$11,050 for branding and marketing.

Caledonia Province

Backyard Butcher

$20,115 per hydraulic jack for custom slaughter needs.

NEK pills

$24,999 to expand the stone mill and farm store.

small ax farm

$24,999 for a farm viability solar kit.

Chittenden County

Trillium Hill Farm

$17,500 to expand a laundry station.

Fisher Brothers Farm

$21,200 for electrical upgrades and backup generators.

Blank Pages Cafe

$10,000 for a consumer durables solution to manage residual currents.

Vermont Tortilla Company

$24,999 for a package upgrade.

Franklin County

Giddings Hill Forest Products

$24,999 for a wood-burning processor for the registration process.

Pinnacle maple watch

$10,186 for the Infrastructure Improvement Project.

View Ledge Maple, LLC

$20,950 to expand sugar storage.

Grand Isle County

Hackett’s orchard

$15,000 for weathering and expansion of retail sales rooms.

lamuel county

Knee Deep Farm

$24,999 to increase crop storage capacity.

goat dairy farm sig

$10,000 working land grant.

Sterling Mountain Farm Carriage toboggan service

$15,618 for buggy rides.

Orange County

Cedar Circle Farm and Education Center, Inc.

$24212 for Cedar Circle Farm and Education Center.

black locust farm

$24,999 for the Farm Welcome Center.

Three cow creamery

$15,000 to expand the dairy barn and create new milking stanchions.

Rutland County

Bird Farm Maple, LLC

$24,999 to expand the electrical service.

Square Family Farm, LLC

$24,999 for the farm’s commercial kitchen.

Otter Point Farm

$14,820 Solar for farm and breeding house.

Southwind Forestry, LLC

20142 USD to upgrade logging infrastructure.

Washington County

local donut, y

$10,000 for a business growth and efficiency project.

Rogers Farmstead, LLC

$20,000 to expand product storage.

Chrome North Branch

$16,469 to protect vineyards from pests.

County Windham

Scott Farm

$24,999 for value-added product development.

hill cup cheese

$10,000 for the vacuum sealing room.

These investments will support businesses that make a living off the land. These investments will make it more affordable for these companies while developing the rural economy. As companies continue to weather the pandemic, working land investments are helping these companies innovate and grow,” said USDA’s Minister of Food and Markets, Anson Tibbets.

This is the first of a series of grants to be offered in 2022, with another round of investments to be announced later in the spring. A total of $5.294 million will be invested this year under the Working Land Program. Please visit to learn more.

The Work Lands Project Initiative (WLEI) and Board of Directors (WLEB) was established by the legislature in 2012 to stimulate economic development in the agriculture and forestry sectors. WLEI is a collaborative effort between the Vermont Agency for Agriculture, Food and Markets, the Vermont Department of Forestry, Parks and Recreation, and the Vermont Agency for Trade and Community Development.

January 14, 2022 | Montpellier, Vato – Agency for Agriculture, Food and Markets

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