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Burlington, Vermont: Comprehensive Development Ordinance (Article 4, Enterprise Districts)

Communities may use regulatory tools such as zoning ordinances and special use districts to establish designated areas for food processing, aggregation, and distribution.  The Burlington Vermont Code of Ordinances creates an Agricultural Processing and Energy District "to accommodate enterprises engaged in the manufacturing, processing, and distribution of agricultural goods and products, and those related to the generation of energy from renewable sources."  

Chittenden County, VT: Comprehensive Plan

On June 19, 2013, the Chittenden County Regional Planning Commission adopted the ECOS Plan as the Regional Plan and the Metropolitan Transportation Plan. On June 25, 2013 the Greater Burlington Industrial Corporation adopted the ECOS Plan as the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for Chittenden County. The 2013 ECOS Plan is the culmination of almost two years of dedicated work from our municipalities, 45+ organizations and residents.

Guidelines for Transfer and Succesion Plans

There are many decisions that will influence the outcome of a farm transfer. For both the exiting farmer and any prospective successor to achieve their goals, important questions must be answered. Even farmers who are actively involved in planning for their farm business often fail to plan for the future of the farm after they depart, or they wait until an acute crisis forces them to do so.

Keeping Farmers on the Land: New Research Underscores Need To Address Farm Transition in New England

Farmers age 65 and older own or manage nearly one-third of New England’s farms, and most are farming without a young farmer alongside them. New research from American Farmland Trust (AFT) and Land For Good sheds light on what this means for the future of New England agriculture.

Gaining Insights, Gaining Access Webinar: Lessons Learned From Senior Farmers Without Successors

On November 23 and 24, 2015, American Farmland Trust and Land For Good hosted two Webinars to discuss the results of our Gaining Insights, Gaining Access project.

This is the second Webinar in a series intended for land conservation organizations, agricultural service providers and policymakers. We hope they will help inform services, programming and policies around farm succession, transfer planning and land access.

Gaining Insights, Gaining Access Webinar: Using New Data To Inform Farm Transfer and Land Access

On November 23 and 24, 2015, American Farmland Trust and Land For Good hosted two Webinars to discuss the results of our Gaining Insights, Gaining Access project.

This is the first Webinar in a series intended for land conservation organizations, agricultural service providers and policymakers. We hope they will help inform services, programming and policies around farm succession, transfer planning and land access. 

Creating Job Growth in Agriculture and Food Production: Opportunities and Realities

This report is designed for a diverse audience of farmers, food producers and processors, community leaders and citizens, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations. The Northern Tier communities of Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont will benefit from the information, analysis, and recommendations about existing and potential new products and markets. For example, farmers and food producers will find detailed data about products and markets, as well as gain perspectives and assessments about the challenges to create profitable farms and businesses. 

New England Food Policy: Building a Sustainable Food System

A sustainable food and farming system in New England is key to creating a region that is resilient, just, healthy, economically vibrant, and environmentally sound. New England Food Policy: Building a Sustainable Food System identifies policies that are helping New England grow its capacity to feed itself, policies that are hindering this growth, gaps in the existing policy framework, and opportunities for new policies to strengthen our food system. The report is based on interviews with food and farming leaders across the region and nearly two years of research and analysis.

A New England Food Vision

A New England Food Vision describes a future in which New England produces at least half of the region’s food—and no one goes hungry. It looks ahead half a century and sees farming and fishing as important regional economic forces; soils, forests, and waterways cared for sustainably; healthy diets as a norm; and access to food valued as a basic human right.

New England Farm Leasing Tutorial

The tutorial was developed as part of a project called Understanding and Negotiating Leases for New England Farm Entrants.

The goal of this tutorial is to introduce you to the benefits and challenges of leasing. It will explain types of farm leases, and when to use them. It may help you consider, design and negotiate legally sound, written lease agreements.

While this tutorial and the project are intended for aspiring, new and beginning farmers, anyone interested in farm leasing will find useful information in these modules.

Agriculture and Climate Change: The Needs of Agriculture in a Warming Climate

American Farmland Trust, Conservation Law Foundation, and the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group conducted a series of 10 webinars delving into policy issues addressed in their report, New England Food Policy: Building a Sustainable Food System, bringing in experts in the field.

This webinar was #5 in the series.

Farmland Investors: An Exploration for New England and Beyond

This report presents findings and a discussion of investor interest in farmland, particularly as it is being expressed in New England. While the profile of farmland investment in the region is a far cry from the global land grabbing that is of increasing concern, the larger issues help inform the investigation. This report sets the broader context and explores several domestic farmland investment models and experiments. 

Models for State-level Purchase of Agricultural Conservation Easement Programs

The presentations in this session from American Farmland Trust's Farmland, Food and Livable Communities Conference feature state-level programs to illustrate different approaches to program implementation. Massachusetts runs a program that directly acquires and monitors easements; Pennsylvania’s Bureau of Farmland Preservation manages an effective state-county partnership that relies on active county agricultural preservation boards; and the Vermont Housing Conservation Board operates a grant style program in close partnership with a few public and private entities.

Does the Option at Agricultural Value Protect Farmland for Beginning Farmers? A Policy Analysis

Since the late 1970’s, local and state governments have protected nearly 2.7 million acres of farmland with Purchase of Agricultural Conservation Easement programs. Given market trends and program regulations, the threat of these protected farms being taken out of the agricultural marketplace became a concern for farming advocates and lawmakers.

Farmland Access and Tenure Innovations: Policy and Program Suggestions to Promote Land Access for New England’s Beginning Farmers

Beginning farmers in New England face particularly daunting obstacles to accessing land in a region where cropland and pasture make up less than 5 percent of the land base and the price of farmland in some areas can exceed ten times the national average. It is essential to develop new strategies to make farms and farmland more accessible, affordable and secure for beginning farmers for the region to sustain and grow its farm sector

Vermont Statute Regulating Use of Words "Local'' and "Locally Grown" to Advertise Agricultural Products

This law regulates the sale of farm products advertised, labeled, or described as "local," or "locally grown" within the state of Vermont.  The law permits the use of these terms for agricultural products originating within Vermont or 30 miles of the place where they are sold.

Guide to Farming in New York State

This guide is comprised of a series of individual fact sheets addressing topics pertinent to planning and operating a farm business. It is not enterprise specific. Rather it addresses topics common to operating a farm business in New York State.

The fact sheets are updated annually. Visit Cornell Unviersity's Northeast Beginning Farmers Project Web site below for the most recent version.



In 2005, Farm Credit East initiated a program to support talented, hardworking individuals entering agriculture. FarmStart assists beginning farmers and new cooperatives through their startup years by providing working capital investments of up to $50,000 to get their business off the ground. The investment functions the same as an operating line of credit. It is intended to provide the critical last dollar of funding to overcome the timing mismatch that makes it difficult for true startup farming operations to generate working capital. Repayment of these funds is up to five years.

Vermont Land Link

Created through a partnership of organizations and programs that focus on farmland access and stewardship, the Vermont Land Link website offers listings of farm properties available statewide and also serves as a gateway to educational resources and support services to help ensure sustainable farmland tenure.

New England Land Link

New England Land Link (NELL) is a program of the New England Small Farm Institute that helps farmers and landholders locate and transfer farms in New England. NELL offers a web-based listing of farm properties in New England and New York, as well as information about other linking programs and resources regionally and nationally.

Farm to Plate Strategic Plan: A 10-year Strategic Plan for Vermont's Food System

In 2009, the Vermont legislature approved the creation of a Farm to Plate Investment Program (F2P). The legislation tasked the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund (VSJF), in consultation with the Vermont Sustainable Agriculture Council (SAC), with crafting a strategic plan based on a broad scope of work. The primary goals of the legislation are to:
1. Increase economic development in Vermont’s food and farm sector.
2. Create jobs in the food and farm economy.
3. Improve access to healthy local foods.

The Center for an Agricultural Economy

The mission of The Center for an Agricultural Economy (CAE) is to build a regenerative, locally based, healthy food system by engaging the greater Hardwick, Vermont, community through collaboration opportunities, educational outreach and providing infrastructure.

Furthermore, CAE encourages the development of a local system that meets the needs and aspirations of the community and ensures economic and ecological stability and abundance.

Farm Transfer Network of New England

The Farm Transfer Network of New England is a network of professionals and organizations that provides farm transfer expertise and support.

FTNNE participants offer education, individual and family consultations, referrals, and resource materials.

FTNNE also conducts workshops and trainings about farm transfer, farm tenure, and related topics for farm families, municipalities, land trusts and other conservation organizations, as well as the general public.


Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group

The mission of the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (NESAWG) is to build a more sustainable, healthy, and equitable food system for the region. They organize, support, and mobilize a 12-state network of organizations and individuals to ensure the strategic impact of a collective voice as they take action toward common goals. Their work strengthens and coordinates the work of hundreds of other organizations by building synergy among them and aligning resources to achieve systemic change at all levels.


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