Buy Local Holiday Shopping Campaign–Apply by Wednesday at 5 PM

The Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets in collaboration with the Department of Tourism is running a buy local campaign this holiday season to highlight Vermont producers and merchants. Statewide, the campaign will encourage online and brick-and-mortar shopping at Vermont-based merchants. Regionally, the campaign will support online sales of Vermont-made products.

Businesses interested in being considered for inclusion in this promotional campaign must submit an application by Wednesday, November 18, 2020 at 5:00pm EST. You can find the short, 1-page application for retailers and makers here. The application closes on Wednesday at 5 pm and the eligibility criteria is below. Don’t wait, apply now!

Producers/Maker Eligibility:

To be eligible to participate in this program, applicants must:

  • be headquartered in Vermont
  • produce product that:
    • is primarily made/transformed in Vermont
    • aligns with a product category that is part of this program (Specialty Food Products, Craft Beverage, Wearables, Home Goods, Personal Care & Beauty Products, Toys & Children’s Gifts)
    • is suitable for gifts
    • sell products online
    • be willing and able to offer a 10% discount via a code (to be provided) and be willing to share information about the code’s usage at your online store
    • be able to ship products within the U.S. (There is an exception for products with limited distribution due to federal and/or state regulations.)

Merchants/Retailers Eligibility:

To be eligible to participate in this program, applicants must:

  • be headquartered in Vermont
  • have a physical store location in Vermont
  • offer products that:

· are suitable for gifts

· align with one or more product categories that are part of this program (Specialty Food Products, Craft Beverage, Wearables, Home Goods, Personal Care & Beauty Products, Toys & Children’s Gifts)

Best,

Gina

– – – – – – – – – –

Gina Clithero (she/her)

Agriculture Development Specialist

Vermont Produce Program | Vermont Specialty Crop Block Grant Program

Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets

116 State St. Montpelier, Vermont 05620-2901

gina.clithero | (802) 585-6225

vermontagriculture.com

COVID-19 Updates and Resources Here

Sign up to receive email updates on marketing opportunities, events, and grants!

New England Winter Fruit Meetings

In lieu of in-person meetings this winter, the Extension programs of the New England universities are together offering a schedule of online webinars. Most webinars will offer pesticide applicator recertification credits, and all are free of charge. There are some rules to get those credits, though- you’ll need to sign on at the beginning, stay on for the duration, and answer a few questions along the way. I’ll be sending details as each approaches, or find up-to-date details at: https://ag.umass.edu/fruit/news-events/new-england-winter-fruit-seminar-series

Fast-track Your VCAAP Application

Forwarding from the VT Agency of Agriculture. -TB

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Fast-track Your VCAAP Application

We’ve been working hard to get as much information out to potential VCAAP applicants as possible, and recently we got to thinking: maybe we’ve created an information-overload. And maybe you’re paralyzed by too many FAQ sheets and application guides?

So… we’ve taken all the guides, webinars, and government jargon and distilled the information down into 2-minute how-to videos that have all the essential information you need to complete an application!

If you haven’t applied yet, we are very confident that these videos are worth your two minutes! Plus, you get to hear our coworkers’ surprisingly soothing radio voices. We think they could moonlight with those skills.

Show me those snappy videos!
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Working Lands Opportunities for Service Providers & Organizations

Service Provider Grants Applications
Eligible projects include direct and indirect services to support development of Vermont-based working lands businesses through technical assistance and other forms of support. Previous recipients may apply. Deadline: November 1

Contract Proposals
Organizations may apply for contracts in a specific service area which assist food, farm, forest and/or wood products businesses. Funding for contracts will range from $50,000-$100,000. Deadline: November 20

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Expanded Economic Recovery Grants

Agency of Commerce and Community Development and the Department of Taxes are administering a new round of grants for businesses.

Webinars overviewing both applications are hosted by leadership from both ACCD and Dept. of Taxes.

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Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness

The SBA Vermont District Office hosts a free webinar from 11:30am – 12:30pm each Tuesday and Thursday to discuss Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) forgiveness. To streamline the PPP forgiveness process, a simpler forgiveness application for loans of $50,000 or less was recently released. More than 8,000 Vermont small businesses are eligible to use the new, simpler form. Download the PPP Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508S.
For more information, email: susan.mazza

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10th Annual Farm to Plate Network Gathering

This year’s virtual event will focus on the transition to Farm to Plate’s next 10-year strategic plan. Breakout sessions will focus on priority issues that have emerged through stakeholder engagement and public input. We’ll also hear stories of adaptation and transition in the food system during COVID-19. F2P will cover the registration fee for farmers, food workers, or food business owners who need financial assistance. Learn about scholarships and register now!

Dates: November 12 – 13

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Fall post-harvest herbicide application

[tree fruit, IPM]

Passing this on from Mary Concklin at UCONN.

Herbicide Applications this Fall

There are a couple of times during the year when the timing of herbicides will have the largest positive impact on your weed management – fall and spring. Herbicides applied at other times during the season are good for eliminating those few pesky weeds that managed to sneak through, often times because of extended wet periods.

Summer annual weeds: they likely died off with a hard frost earlier this fall. Pre-emergent herbicides applied this fall will help to control new annual weed germination in the spring. It is also easier to apply this time of the year than during the busy wet spring when, in some years, it is difficult to get into the fields before germination occurs.

Fall applications: For all perennial weeds, a combination of pre- and post-emergent materials will provide the best results as long as the application is made while the emerged weeds are still alive. Applications made after they have been hit with a hard frost can be with pre-emergent materials only which aims at moving the herbicide into the root zone and impacting emergence in the spring.

Some materials perform better in the fall because of their mode of action. Glyphosate/Roundup is a systemic that moves into the plant. In late summer and fall, plants are moving food reserves to the roots. Glyphosate applied at this time will also move to the root system and kill the plant. In the spring, movement is upward in plants as they grow, so glyphosate applications made at that time have less of a chance of giving you the results you are looking for.

Organic growers also have organic herbicides available. These are contact not systemic materials and work best when applied to young weeds for knockdown. They will need to be re-applied several times throughout the growing season.

Brad Majek, Rutgers, offers the following about timing:

Apply herbicides to the tree row in established orchards twice annually, in late fall and in late spring. Herbicides applied in late October or early November control winter annuals, certain perennials, and early season summer annuals. Spring herbicide applications extend summer annual weed control through harvest. Advantages of two herbicide applications per year include:

1. Control of winter annual weeds, including camphorweed, wild lettuce and horseweed (marestail) and summer annual weed control for the same cost as most single application weed control programs.

2. Improved spring labor and equipment distribution requirements by controlling early summer annual weeds with residual herbicides applied the previous fall, thus delaying the need to spray in the spring until May or early June.

3. Increased consistency of weed control treatments, especially control of summer annual weeds when dry weather follows the spring herbicide application.

4. Decreased risk of crop injury, since each herbicide application must last less than a full year. Herbicides can be alternated and rates can be reduced or split to improve crop safety.

5. Decreased competition from established winter annual weeds and summer annual weed seedlings in March, April, and May for fertilizer and water when the trees begin to grow.

Late Fall Herbicide Applications should include a translocated post emergence herbicide, and a residual broadleaf herbicide. A residual grass herbicide may also be applied in the fall. Apply 2,4-D to control emerged winter annual broadleaf weeds tank-mixed with Princep for residual control. Consider a labeled glyphosate product if perennial weeds are present and treatment is recommended in the fall. The use of a grass herbicide in the fall depends on the product chosen. Kerb 50WP is the only grass herbicide that must be applied in the fall, if it is used, to control certain cool season perennial grasses. An additional residual annual grass herbicide is needed in the spring to provide full season summer annual grass control following a fall application of Kerb 50WP. Solicam 90DF, Surflan 80WP, Devrinol 50WP and Prowl 4EC (non-bearing only) are annual grass herbicides that should be applied in late fall or as a split application, half in the fall and the second half in the spring. Use the split application when grass pressure is heavy for best results. The use of these herbicides in spring only has resulted in inconsistent weed control when dry weather followed the application.

Information on tree fruit herbicides may be found at: https://netreefruit.org/weeds

Where trade names or commercial products are used for identification, no discrimination is intended and no endorsement is implied. Always read the label before using any pesticide. The label is the legal document for the product use. Disregard any information in this message if it is in conflict with the label.

The UVM Tree Fruit and Viticulture Program is supported by the University of Vermont Agriculture Experiment Station, UVM Extension, USDA NIFA E-IPM Program, and USDA Risk Management Agency.

UVM Extension helps individuals and communities put research-based knowledge to work. University of Vermont Extension, and U.S. Department of Agriculture, cooperating, offer education and employment to everyone without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or familial status.

Helping out Champlain Orchards

I am passing this request from UVM Extension on to the greater fruit growing community. It is rare that I use this list to promote a specific farm, and this should not be read as preferential treatment. What happened at Champlain could have happened on any of our farms, and this is a chance to support each other as a farming community, and to consider what we may need if such a situation befalls any of us. I’ve talked with Ginger and she has indicated that much of the need involves housing upgrades, including dishwashers and laundry facilities to help the workers maintain quarantine while keeping the farm running. She suggested, and I agree, that mundane features like this are something that all farms that have communal housing may want to consider moving forward. Take care, everyone, and please let me know if you have any issues or concerns.

-Terry

By now most of you have probably heard that some of the Jamaican crew members at Champlain Orchards have contracted COVID.

Many of us have worked with Champlain Orchards over the years through our jobs in Extension, and some of us have even had the privilege of working alongside the Jamaican guys as fellow employees of the orchard. They are an amazing group of people, and it is hard to imagine how challenging it must be to be dealing with the pandemic while so far from friends and family.

You can find out more about the situation on Champlain Orchard’s website. While the state is helping in some ways, there is still going to be considerable cost associated with taking care of the men, making adaptations to housing to keep everyone as safe and able to quarantine as possible, etc..If you would like to help, you can make donations by scrolling down to the green button at the bottom of the webpage.

These funds will go towards purchasing supplies for the crew, and making improvements to labor housing. If you have ideas of other kinds of assistance you may be able to offer, please contact marketing to help coordinate.

GINGER NICKERSON|FOREST PEST EDUCATION COORDINATOR

she/her pronouns (why is this here?)

VT Urban & Community Forestry Program

University of Vermont Extension

327 US-302, Barre, VT 05641

Mon – Thurs: 802-476-2003 (Please note I do not work on Fridays) │ www.vtcommunityforestry.org

Where trade names or commercial products are used for identification, no discrimination is intended and no endorsement is implied. Always read the label before using any pesticide. The label is the legal document for the product use. Disregard any information in this message if it is in conflict with the label.

The UVM Tree Fruit and Viticulture Program is supported by the University of Vermont Agriculture Experiment Station, UVM Extension, USDA NIFA E-IPM Program, and USDA Risk Management Agency.

UVM Extension helps individuals and communities put research-based knowledge to work. University of Vermont Extension, and U.S. Department of Agriculture, cooperating, offer education and employment to everyone without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or familial status.

COVID resources

By now it’s likely that everyone in the Vermont orchard community has heard news of a COVID outbreak among the harvest crew at Champlain Orchards in Shoreham. I write this with respect for the Champlain Orchard community, and humility regarding the potential for an outbreak when we are doing the best we can. A farm isn’t that different than a college campus, and this only highlights how easily any of us can wind up in a tough situation.

The Vermont Agricultural and Public Health communities are providing support to Champlain and to other growers. Addison District State Senator Ruth Hardy has issued a communication to constituents outlining the services being provided. For many of our smaller pick-your-own orchards, the low crop and high demand have led to a shortened season, and many shops have already closed up for the season. But for those who are still harvesting, and especially who still have crews in bunkhouses, it’s critically important to follow CDC guidance as I outlined in a previous post.

Finally, on a good note, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food, and Markets has announced an extension to November 15 of the Vermont Covid-19 Agricultural Assistance Program. VAAFM personnel had contacted me earlier in the season because few growers had signed onto the program, which wasn’t too surprising given the timing during harvest. The purpose of VCAAP grants is to stabilize agricultural businesses and organizations based on their lost revenues and expenses related to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Please consider applying for this program, more information is available at: https://agriculture.vermont.gov/covid-19-information/vermont-covid-19-agriculture-assistance-program

Take care out there,

Terry

Health Services for H2A Workers

Passing on from Naomi Wolcott-MacCausland at UVM Extension. -TB

UVM Extension wants to make sure H2A workers are as healthy as possible during this busy time of year and into the future. The fall flu season combined with COVID is potentially a huge threat to the success and viability of farms and we want to help reduce this risk. We are making available FREE health services on and off-farm in the coming weeks and are doing a health needs assessment to help us make decisions about future services.

WHAT WE CAN DO FOR YOU THIS FALL:

· Send an immigrant farmer outreach nurse to the farm for health screenings

· Arrange free telehealth visits for workers

· Provide COVID educational resources, screen potentially symptomatic workers by phone, and coordinate on-farm COVID testing for symptomatic workers

· Provide information about local flu clinics accessible to your crew (and when possible coordinate on farm flu clinics)

WHAT WE NEED FROM YOU:

· Input of farm owners regarding their view of the health care needs of H2A workers

· Input of H2A workers regarding their health care needs and barriers to care

HOW DO I PARTICIPATE?

Take a short survey!

Farm owners or managers:

Use this jennica.stetler. Either way, we’ll be in touch with you.

H2A workers:

We would like to conduct these assessments in person at a time that is most convenient for the farm and workers while masked and practicing physical distancing. We hope to arrange these in person visits through farm owners or managers. You can help us do this by taking the survey or emailing jennica.stetler.

UPDATED Pick-Your-Own Restart Plan

Dear VVBGA Listserv Members,

The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets has updated the Pick-Your-Own Restart Plan. The Pick-Your-Own (PYO) Restart Plan is intended to support Vermont farms that offer pick-your-own opportunities to safely invite to customers to their farms during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The updated PYO Restart Plan reflects recent changes to the statewide mandatory health and safety requirements described in the Agency of Commerce and Community Development’s Phased Restart Work Safe Guidance.

To read the full PYO Restart Plan, visit: https://agriculture.vermont.gov/document/pick-your-own-restart-plan .

For additional information on the PYO Restart Plan and answers to Frequently Asked Questions, please visit: https://agriculture.vermont.gov/covid-19-information/covid-19-sector-guidance-news/sector-guidance-pick-your-own-restart-plan .

Please direct any questions regarding the updated Pick-Your-Own Restart Plan to AGR.CovidResponse or 802-585-6225. Thank you!

Best,

Gina

– – – – – – – – – –

Gina Clithero (she/her)

Agriculture Development Specialist

Vermont Produce Program | Vermont Specialty Crop Block Grant Program

Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets

116 State St. Montpelier, Vermont 05620-2901

gina.clithero | (802) 585-6225

vermontagriculture.com

COVID-19 Updates and Resources Here

Sign up to receive email updates on marketing opportunities, events, and grants!

Getting orchards and wineries listed on the VermontVacation.com directory

You may have heard about ACCD’s new Buy Local Vermont program. The program is intended to bring needed foot traffic and increase sales for local restaurants, retail stores, entertainment and performing arts venues, lodging and tourism-related businesses. On September 8, 2020, the program will begin incentivizing purchases by giving Vermont residents $30 savings offers to be used at local Vermont businesses where they can use their funds. Your members can add their business to our Buy Local directory starting now and we are strongly encouraging all interested businesses to do so before September 7 (although they will be able to add their business after that date). For information about the program and to watch an informational webinar, visit the ACCD Business Recovery Resource Center.

Sara DeFilippi | Sales & Marketing Specialist

Agency of Commerce & Community Development
Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing
1 National Life Dr, Davis Bldg, 6th Floor | Montpelier, VT 05620-0501

802-272-2633 cell

Sara.DeFilippi

Virtual Vermont

COVID-19 Recovery Resource Center

Pre-harvest juice testing for ripeness

Heat accumulation is up overall this year, and we are about ten days ahead of ‘normal’ in South Burlington. As harvest approaches, it’s important to keep and eye on three important parameters of juice chemistry: soluble solids (sugar), pH, and titratable acidity. These values should be checked at least weekly against your target levels for the wine style you are aiming for. Last year, we published a fact sheet the details the methods for completing these tests: http://www.uvm.edu/~fruit/pubs/UVMFRT006_PreharvestGrapeTesting.pdf

Good luck with the harvest.

Where trade names or commercial products are used for identification, no discrimination is intended and no endorsement is implied. Always read the label before using any pesticide. The label is the legal document for the product use. Disregard any information in this message if it is in conflict with the label.

The UVM Tree Fruit and Viticulture Program is supported by the University of Vermont Agriculture Experiment Station, UVM Extension, USDA NIFA E-IPM Program, and USDA Risk Management Agency.

UVM Extension helps individuals and communities put research-based knowledge to work. University of Vermont Extension, and U.S. Department of Agriculture, cooperating, offer education and employment to everyone without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or familial status.

UVMFRT006_PreharvestGrapeTesting.pdf