Taylar Foster blogs about our NEK Food System Summit!

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Posted: February 24, 2016

Is your calendar marked for March 26??
March 26, 2016 is the day of the NEK Food System Plan Summit at Sterling College in Craftsbury Common! This will be a full day of discussion and networking, starting at 9 am. The Summit is free and lunch will be provided. Register today: www.nvda.net/agriculture.php

Who should attend?
Anyone living or working in the Northeast Kingdom! Our food system includes producers, distributors, grocers and retailers, wholesalers, processors, and consumers. It’s farmers and the people who get the food from the farm to the plate, to the school, to the store, or to the flask. It’s even the composters and conservationists. It’s all of us. Attendees must be prepared to focus on strengthening the NEK food system.Food System Mural

We’ll tackle questions such as:

  • What is the future for our NEK family farms?
  • How do we feed our hungry neighbors and communities?
  • How can we get NEK food and farm products to other markets?
  • What storage or aggregation needs do NEK farmers have for the future?
  • What can we do together to advance the local food economy?

Okay, but what is a food system plan?
Because the food system deals with the production, distribution, and consumption of food and drinks, and because it covers everything from our economy to our environment, we need to foster the process that builds on the strengths of regional and local planning. The Northeast Kingdom Food System Plan supports agriculturally based economic development specific to Caledonia, Essex, and Orleans Counties. The Plan identifies trends, goals, and opportunities to grow the agricultural economy of the Northeast Kingdom through partnership and networking, priority project implementation, and by tracking progress made over time. Northeastern Vermont Development Association (NVDA) and the Center for an Agricultural Economy (CAE), along with a NEK-based Steering Committee, are overseeing an update of the 2011 Plan.

Ready to RSVP?
Visit our webpage to register, see a full agenda, and read more about the Summit and the Plan, or you can find us on Facebook through the NEK Food System Network. Space is limited so make sure to register early! If you have questions, please email me (Taylar) at nekfoodsystemplan@gmail.com.

This project is funded through a Rural Business Development grant from USDA Rural Development.

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