The Agricultural Engineering Program of UVM Extension is dedicated to enhancing Vermont’s food systems through analysis, design, evaluation and adoption of infrastructure, technology and equipment that meet the needs of food producers and processors.
Vermont’s food systems are experiencing increased localization, value addition, diversification, extension of growing season and increased market demand. New crops and new ways of growing and harvesting crops are being explored and adopted. Regional processing of crops to value-added food products is on the rise. Consumers are demanding nutritious, safe, and locally-sourced foods through-out the year requiring a focus on extended growing season and improved storage mechanisms. This is happening at a time when energy is expensive and environmental impact is increasingly important. As a result, the agricultural landscape and the people who work in it are changing and adapting. The dynamic nature of the food system demands technical assistance in several areas including engineering.
Farmers and processors with specific technical needs and research & development ideas related to Vermont food systems are encouraged to contact us.
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This conference is filled with a variety of vendors at the trade show, presentations covering specific details of individual crops and varieties, and even talks on designing your farm with an eye on food safety. Another interesting activity that went on was the farmer to farmer sessions that are not presentations but a lead conversation to discuss what works and what doesn’t on your farm. A lot of tips, tricks, and common complaints are all brought up and shared during this literally circled up conversation.
If you’ve never been here are a few photos from the event, which was very snowy in mid-December.
Here is a short highlight video from the conference!
Picadilly Farm is owned and operated by Jenny and Bruce Wooster since 2006. Their farm is located in the South East Corner of New Hampshire in Winchester and has about 30 acres in production. They provide fresh produce to over 1,000 families through CSA shares spread across New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts.
Bruce reached out to share that he has an AZS Rinse conveyor and offered up his thoughts on the equipment as well.
In December, UVM Ag Engineering ventured out to Grand Rapids, MI to attend the Great Lakes Expo.
This exposition was HUGE and full of a variety of seed companies, equipment suppliers, and machinery on display. There was a lot of technology targeted towards fruit growing which is big in that region which was neat to see.