The Mad River Food Hub in Waitsfield and Food Works Farm-to-Table in Montpelier, two local and independent food distribution centers serving Central Vermont, have collaborated in an effort that will strengthen and expand the delivery of fresh, local food to businesses, organizations and institutions throughout the region.

The two hubs, who serve different communities in Washington County, worked together with the Vermont Agency of Agriculture to obtain and share the use of a refrigerated truck that will enable both food hubs to expand and better serve their markets. Having use of the truck, says Dan Stein, the Farm-to-Table coordinator, is an important step in the development of a strong and vibrant local food system — a goal both food hubs have in common.

The Mad River Food Hub is the first of its kind: a fully equipped, licensed vegetable and meat processing facility in New England. Located in Waitsfield, it provides farmers and food producers with a wide array of commercial-scale meat and vegetable processing equipment as well as on-site storage and distribution service to local market outlets. Visit www.madriverfoodhub.com/about/.

Food Works Farm-to-Table is a program of Food Works at Two Rivers Center in Montpelier, a nonprofit dedicated to the cultivation of a strong, local food system through a number of programs, including educational gardens, nutrition and cooking classes, a teaching farm and the Farm-to-Table program. Farm-to-Table, which works with over a dozen area farmers and food producers and distributes to over 100 local sites, helps increase access to local food by providing schools, daycares, senior centers and other organizations with highly subsidized food distributions.

This, says Stein, both expands the market for local growers and food producers while also increasing access to local food across the whole of the community.

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