rows of crops

Vermont Produce Safety Improvement Grants Now Accepting Applications

$5K to $20K grants support the costs of implementing on-farm food safety practices

The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (VAAFM) is now accepting applications for the Vermont Produce Improvement Grant program. Produce Safety Improvement Grants (PSIG) can support the costs of implementing on-farm food safety practices to help vegetable and fruit growers transition to compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Produce Safety Rule, address compliance with new Produce Safety Rule harvest and post-harvest water requirements, or meet market demands for on-farm food safety.

Awards will range from $5,000 to $20,000. PSIG funds can be used for any of the following, but are not limited to: harvest, wash, pack, and storage supplies; wash/pack area construction or renovation; monitoring/control devices; handwashing stations; cleaning/sanitization tools; health and hygiene signage; compost/manure handling improvements; and materials and systems to improve training and record-keeping. Applicants must grow, harvest, pack, or hold “covered produce” as defined by the federal FSMA Produce Safety Rule and have average annual produce sales of greater than $29,245 over the past three years.1
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Young Adult Apprenticeships for Summer 2023

The Anne Saxelby Legacy Fund provides monthlong paid apprenticeships for young adults to live on sustainable farms — to work, learn, and be inspired to create change in their communities. March 15th application deadline.


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dairy processing

$13 million in grants available for dairy processing

The Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC) announces two grants for dairy processors, totaling a $13 million investment in the region. This much-needed investment comes at a time when the conventional and organic dairy sectors are facing extreme pressures, from skyrocketing feed and transportation costs to continuing supply-chain disruptions, to limited processing infrastructure in the Northeast.
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Image: Drilled cover crops take root on a farm in Waterford, VT.

Vermont Pay for Performance Program Application Now Open for Farms

Program provides performance-based payments to Vermont farmers for reducing phosphorus runoff

January 5, 2023 | Montpelier VT - The Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (VAAFM) is pleased to announce that applications are now open for the Vermont Pay for Performance (VPFP) program. VPFP is a new and innovative program that uses environmental modeling to provide performance-based payments to Vermont farmers for reducing phosphorus (P) losses from their agricultural fields.

Applications for the 2023 VPFP Program are due by January 20, 2023.
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NBC5 News Story on Farmer Peer Program

In this brief news story, the Farmer Peer program is highlighted.
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Farmers at Honey Field Farm harvesting daikon

Valley News Article: Program trains Upper Valley farmers to help others in mental health crisis

This great article in the Valley News profiles 3 of our Farmer Peers, and shares about the increasingly stressful work of farming. [Photo credit: Valley News Lebanon, NH, Jennifer Hauck.]
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milk in crates

$1 million in working lands funding, covid recovery, 12/16/22 deadline

Primary producers of farm and forest products can now apply now for the ARPA-Funded Primary Producer grant opportunity! The Working Lands Enterprise Initiative (WLEI) has released a request for applications (RFA) totaling $1,000,000. This grant opportunity is possible due to federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds appropriated by the Vermont legislature to the Working Lands Enterprise Initiative. The Working Lands Enterprise Initiative anticipates releasing a second ARPA-Funded Primary Producer Grant opportunity in 2023, with available funds of up to $1,000,000. Examples of eligible primary production activities are farming, livestock rearing, maple sugaring, dairy, and logging.
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health insurance scrabble

Farmers and Health Insurance Podcast

Agrisafe podcast series, Talking Total Farmer Health, takes up the topic of health insurance. Listen and learn.
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$600 Relief Payments for Farm Workers

The Farm and Food Workers Relief Grant Program
A one-time direct relief payment of $600 will be available to qualifying frontline farm, grocery, and meatpacking workers for expenses incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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2023 New England Farmer Microgrants Program! Apply by November 4th.

Livestock producers - grants up to $10,000 for projects that improve soil health through the adoption of regenerative agricultural practices.
Any New England Farmer - grants of up to $5,000 to purchase or lease land to farm or pass their farms on to other farmers.
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Suicide Prevention Training for the Agriculture Community

Waterbury - Nov. 30th 1pm to 3:30 - CANCELLED
Williston - Dec. 3rd 9am to noon
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Free Webinar on Tax Preparation and Resources

The Farm Tax Estimator Tool is an interactive spreadsheet that producers can download to estimate tax liability.
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2 Grant Opportunities from Working Lands Enterprise

FY’23 Grants totaling $140K assist Vermont working lands Service Providers and Producer Associations
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zoomed in photo of cow's face

Funding for Dairy Sector Coming!

DBIC will soon announce funding opportunities for diary producers and service providers. More information to come.

Farmer Questionnaire Summer 2022

Farm First is conducting a survey to better understand the physical and mental-emotional challenges farmers face. Help us access federal funds farmers. Please complete the confidential survey by August 15.
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Cultivating Resilience: Growing Together, 4 Episode Podcast from Culitvemos

Listen to real farmers talk about their struggles with finances, climate anxiety, community, family and legacy. Learn how fellow farmers are coping and thriving.
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VT Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets announcement

Farm First, the State’s resource for providing farmers and their families support, information, and resources to reduce stress, is expanding its services to include a stress reduction training for agriculture service providers and a Farmer Peer Network.

Avian Flu in Vermont

Learn more about the USDA Defend the Flock Program.
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Farmer in greenhouse

Vermont Public Radio story on the Farmer Peer Network

In June, 2022, VPR caught up with farmer Valerie Woodhouse to talk about how stressful farming can be, and why she's becoming a Farmer Peer to help other farmers.
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Click below to send a message to a Farm First resource counselor or to find our phone number – you can call us anytime.

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