Rural Vermont Releases Policy & Hemp Survey Results

In October of 2018 Rural Vermont conducted a policy priorities survey of our membership and Vermont’s greater agricultural community. Our goal was to share information about some issues that we expect to be considered during the upcoming legislative biennium. We had an additional goal of seeking guidance from our community on how Rural Vermont should prioritize these issues. Read more here.

In August, Rural Vermont sent a survey to all of Vermont’s registered hemp producers and all the folks in the Rural Vermont database who have identified themselves as interested in hemp. The purpose of the survey was to gather information to help inform Rural Vermont’s strategy for engaging in the upcoming public rule-making process. We expect to have a timeline for the rule-making process by the beginning of 2019. Read some highlights from the Hemp Survey.

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Mollie Wills
Rural Vermont’s Annual Meeting & Celebration a Success!

Our annual gathering is just around the corner, and this year, we look forward to heading to southern Vermont! Join us at the Evening Star Grange in Dummerston for live music, a shared meal, board electionsraffle drawing, social time, and more! 

Raffle tickets available online through 11/4 and in person at the Annual Meeting. Need not be present to win. Prizes valued at $100+ donated by Darn Tough, Nutty Steph's, and Fair Winds Farm. Tix $10 for 2 or $20 for 5. BUY RAFFLE TICKETS BEFORE THE MEETING HERE.

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Get Your Fall Raffle Tickets

For a very limited time, you can purchase raffle tickets that not only support Rural Vermont, but also put you in the running to win your choice of three super special prizes: a $100 gift card to Darn Tough, a goodie bag of chocolates and granola from Nutty Steph's, or a horse-drawn sleigh ride for ten at Fair Winds Farm. Tix $10 for 2 or $20 for 5. Available online HERE through 11/4 and in person at Rural Vermont's Annual Meeting on 11/5

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Mollie Wills
Summer Appeal Update!

With the great support of our members, we've met our second goal of $10,000!

Let's keep the momentum going to meet our next goal of $15K. Please give whatever you can, as soon as you can!  And when you give, you will be entered to win a $100 of Johnny's credit!


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Coco Moseley
Submit YOUR comments on GMO Labeling Rules NOW!

Rural Vermont just submitted our official comments to the USDA in response to their draft GMO labeling rules. There is still time to submit yours! They're due July 3rd. Click Read More to view Rural Vermont's comments.

Public comments on the proposed rules should be submitted
by July 3, 2018 via the Federal eRulemaking portal at
Comments may also be filed with the
Docket Clerk,
1400 Independence Ave., SW, Room 4543 South,
Washington, DC 20250
Reference: Docket No. AMS-TM-17-0050

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Coco Moseley
(pitch)Fork It Over! All Donations Doubled!

June 1, 2018

It’s barely summer, and already what a momentous year for Rural Vermont. New website and podcast! More Pitchfork Series events! Coalitions and working groups! Big wins in the legislature!
Our members have made it all possible, and we need your support today to keep at it. Donate to our summer appeal and your donation will be matched dollar-for-dollar.

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Coco Moseley
2018 End of Legislative Session Recap

NOTE: The links we have provided to the bills listed below are the most current versions available through the Legislative website – they may change.  


What this bill will do: Provide statewide consistency in how accessory on-farm businesses are regulated by municipalities giving farmers more opportunities to develop additional income for their farms.

What is the status of this bill: This bill has been passed by both chambers and, on May 21st, the Governor signed the bill into law. This law will take effect on July 1, 2018.

NEXT STEPS: Please contact your Senators and Representatives to thank them for supporting this bill which will provide significant economic opportunities for farmers. ALSO – watch for notification from Rural Vermont seeking your input on implementation of this new law.


What this bill will do: Provide the opportunity for any farmer who registers with the Agency of Agriculture by July 1, 2018 to grow Hemp and participate in a federally compliant research program in 2019. This bill also mandates a formal rule-making process for the implementation of the new law and provides regulations for the testing and quality control of hemp and hemp-derived products.

What is the status of this bill: See H.663 status, above

NEXT STEPS: Please contact your Senators and Representatives to thank them for supporting this bill which will help Vermont re-establish Hemp as a significant agricultural crop. ALSO – watch for notification from Rural Vermont about opportunities to participate in the upcoming rule-making process. It will be VERY IMPORTANT for small-scale farmers to actively contribute to shaping the implementation of this law.

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Coco Moseley
Legislative Update

Here’s the latest news from the Statehouse. Read more for details on each bill.



S.276 – RURAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BILL – Including new Hemp Pilot Program





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Coco Moseley
3/27 Update from the Golden Dome

Now that all the "Crossover" deadlines have come and gone, it is clear which bills have the potential to continue through the balance of the legislative process this year. Fortunately several of the bills Rural Vermont has been working on are still "alive." 

As you are probably aware, much of the energy in the State House for the past few weeks has been focused on unprecedented gun control legislation. In addition, the political lines between the majority of the legislature and the Governor have become more clearly drawn as the struggle over the big annual "money" bills accelerates. The Governor is maintaining his "no new fees, no new taxes" position and the legislators are struggling to figure out how to pay for crucial services and programs. 

None of the bills that Rural Vermont is working on involve appropriations or fees. We are hopeful that this, combined with the potential, albeit modest, of positive progress for farmers and the agricultural economy will increase their chances of being passed. You can read more details here.

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Dan Kirk