Contributed by By Stewart Truelsen for AFBF's Focus on agriculture. A common worry among farmers in California, Florida, Texas, Michigan and elsewhere is that they won’t have enough migrant labor for their fruit and vegetable harvests. Some years they are downright desperate for help. Worse yet, the future of migrant labor is uncertain because immigration law needs reform.
The Vermont Senate Agriculture Committee and House Agriculture and Forestry Committee are holding a public hearing on the 2018 Federal Farm Bill. The hearing will be Thursday, April 20th, from 10 AM – Noon in Room 10 at the Vermont State House in Montpelier. Farmers and all members of the agriculture community, as well as interested food consumers, are invited to testify. Signup will be at the door the day of the hearing, and participants will speak in the order they sign up at the hearing.
In 2016, Vermont Breakfast on the Farm was held at Nea-Tocht Farm in Ferrisburgh and Green Mountain Dairy Farm in Sheldon. Over 2,000 visitors enjoyed a free breakfast and a first-hand look at a modern dairy farm to better understand how Vermont’s agricultural community works together to produce safe and wholesome food. Vermont Farm Bureau helped to sponsor Breakfast on the Farm which was coordinated by the Vermont Agency of Agriculture with help from volunteers and local businesses.
“Be a Good Neighbor and always be aware of what visitors are doing on your farm,” stressed Beth Kennett of Liberty Hill Farm and Inn of Rochester Vermont. Kennett was part of a panel of five farmers that are involved in agritourism at Vermont Farm Bureau’s Agritourism Workshop on March 29.