240 Attend the Northern Tier Dairy Summit
April 5, 2019 | Montpelier, VT - The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food, and Markets (VAAFM) hosted the Northern Tier Dairy Summit April 1-2, 2019 at Jay Peak Resort. The Dairy Summit, which focused on actionable next steps to help a dairy industry impacted by a fifth year of record low prices, a volatile export market, and oversupply of milk, attracted more than 240 attendees, 115 of them dairy farmers. Attendees came from Vermont, New York, New Hampshire, Connecticut, representing farms, technical service providers, government, lenders, nonprofits, and a diverse array of other dairy stakeholders.
“Our dairy farmers are the backbone of our working lands economy,” Governor Scott said. “If there’s a practical solution to our regional milk supply issues, I know this group will identify it, and work towards broadening the conversation.”
Participants of note include: Governor Phil Scott, Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman, VAAFM Secretary Anson Tebbetts, VAAFM Deputy Secretary Alyson Eastman, Agency of Commerce and Community Development Deputy Secretary Ted Brady, New York State Commissioner of Agriculture Richard Ball, Vermont Senator and Chair of the Agriculture Committee Robert Starr, and members of the Vermont House and Senate, and the Congressional delegation staff.
Secretary Tebbetts commented, “Our farmers are engaged and brought tremendous energy to the summit. Thank you for your ideas and suggestions. Your involvement was critical as we work on long term solutions.”
The Dairy Summit featured keynote speaker Dr. David Kohl from Virginia Tech, highlight speakers Zach Ward from Grasslands Dairy Farms (New Zealand and Missouri), and Mateo Kehler from Jasper Hill Farm. Eight breakout sessions covered topics ranging from diversification and grazing to payment for ecosystem services and farmer coalition building.
Outcomes of the Dairy Summit, based on participant action and discussion, will developed over the coming weeks. For more pictures and to stay up to date with next steps and action opportunities, visit https://agriculture.vermont.gov/2019northerntierdairysummit
For questions, please contact:
VAAFM Agricultural Development Section Chief
802-522-2252 | http://agriculture.vermont.gov