MONTPELIER -- Vermont is getting $188,000 in U.S. Department of Agriculture grants to provide farmers food safety training, expand social media markets for maple producers and boost access to locally produced foods.
The grants will go to nine projects around the state, including the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont and the University of Vermont Extension Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Apple Program.
NOFA Vermont will use its $24,000 grant to create a statewide community supported agriculture network.
UVM’s Department of Plant and Soil science is getting a $12,000 grant to help blueberry and raspberry growers minimize the damage caused by an insect pest.
And an $11,000 grant is going to Burlington’s Intervale Center to increase food hub sales by developing best practices, and developing a marketing and outreach campaign.
"These grants represent an investment in the research, education, and infrastructure that will help keep Vermont at the forefront for diversified and value-added agriculture," said Vermont Agriculture Secretary Chuck Ross, who thanked the congressional delegation for its work to support Vermont’s farmers and agricultural industry.
"They continue to push for the passage of a Farm Bill so that this program can continue into the future," he said of the delegation.
The projects were picked from 22 applicants by a review committee.