Vermont ‘Farm to Plate’ to Create Jobs and Strengthen Local Food System
Vermont is an example of how state-level legislative support can help regional, mid-sized, and small producers and rural communities. The state has developed polices aimed at community-based agricultural economic development aligned with local and regional food system infrastructure development. In 2009, the Vermont Legislature passed the Farm to Plate (F2P) initiative as part of the state’s jobs bill. Estimates of the F2P plan include 1,500 jobs over the next 10 years based on a five percent increase in food system production and an accompanying annual increase of $88 million in the state’s gross domestic product. Currently, 12.9 percent of private businesses and 16 percent of private jobs in Vermont are in the food and farm sector. In 2007, the state’s agricultural and food output totaled $2.7 billion.