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October 2023 Resources, Opportunities, News, and Funding

October 26, 2023

As the growing season slows during fall, and tourism slows during stick season, it seems opportunities to participate in programs, access resources, and apply for funding opportunities in Vermont drastically increase. In fact, there's more going on this month than we can fit in our member newsletter! Read on for an extensive (but hardly exhaustive) list of the goings-on in Vermont's food and farm sector.

VFN Member and Industry News

Project and Program Opportunities

  • The Vermont Tourism Summit is calling for proposals! VFN serves on the board, and is helping to organize the 39th Annual Vermont Tourism Summit, scheduled for May 8-10, 2024. Presentation proposals should address current trends and issues relevant to Vermont travel industry businesses and professionals, and should not be a sales pitch for a product or service. Learn more and submit your proposal here.
  • Join Rural Vermont for a series of on-farm animal processing workshops, including:
    • Rabbit butchering at Giant Journey Farm on Saturday, Oct. 28
    • Pig slaughter and processing at Merck Forest and Farmland Center on Saturday, Nov. 4
    • Turkey processing at Union Brook Farm on Sunday, Nov. 5
    • Lamb slaughter and processing at Argyll Farm on Saturday, Nov. 18
    • Get the full list of events and details on Rural Vermont's website
  • Poultry Farms & Agritourism study: Andrea Etter is partnering with Lisa Chase and other UVM researchers to conduct research to understand zoonosis risks on Vermont agritourism operations with animals present.There research goals are to (1) determine how commonly animals on agritourism operations carry bacteria, such as Salmonella, that could make visitors sick and (2) what practices/setups impact the odds of finding zoonotic pathogens. Their hope is to help agritourism operations preemptively identify and manage risks before any illnesses or outbreaks occur. Any operation with at minimum poultry is eligible to participate, and we will keep the identities of all participants confidential. There are no costs to participate, and they will provide participants with feedback on their individual bacterial testing results & work with them to identify solutions. If you are interested in learning more, email Andrea

Funding Opportunities


  • Check out the UVM Extension Regulatory Navigation Checklist, a resource for farms that offer agritourism activities. This resource provides the basics of entering into an agritourism operation, including land use regulations, permits, liabilities, and licenses to consider before implementing an agritourism enterprise.
  • The Farm to Plate Agricultural Literacy Priority Strategy Team has released a new report on Agricultural Literacy in Vermont. This report seeks to answer important questions: What is agricultural literacy? Why does it matter? Who are the key stakeholders? And how can we strengthen agricultural literacy amongst Vermonters? Learn more about this project and read the report here.
  • How does DigInVT support your business? Check out our report of the DigInVT website, Fresh Feed newsletter, and how our content helps your business reach Vermonters and visitors to the Green Mountain State who seek authentic food and farm experiences.
  • Farmers! If your farm hosts agritourism activities - including a public farm stand, you-pick, farm stays, tours, and workshops - it is important for you to have proper ACT 31 signage. Act 31 (H.89)  establishes a limitation on liability for agritourism hosts. The act acknowledges that there are “inherent risks” in participating in agritourism activities and shifts those risks to properly warned consumers. Signs are now available - click here to order yours!
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