Vermont’s only shared meat and vegetable processing facility, the Mad River Food Hub (MRFH) in Waitsfield, recently received a grant of inspection from the USDA.

After six months of state inspection of processed meat and value-added meat products, customers processing at the MRFH will now be able to use the USDA-inspected legend on their products and distribute them outside Vermont.

“From the outset it was our plan to be a USDA-inspected facility,” said founder Robin Morris.

“Many farms and value-added producers are now finding new markets for their locally raised meats and products outside Vermont which requires the USDA-inspected legend,” Morris continued.

Over 12 local farms and food producers are already using the MRFH’s meat processing facility including the Vermont Meat Company, Vermont Raw Pet Food, Tangletown Farm, Vermont Salumi, Screamin’ Ridge Farm, Knoll Farm, Vermont Chevon Meats and von Trapp Farmstead.

“We process at the Mad River Food Hub every week and USDA inspection of Joe’s Meat Soups is important,” said Joe Buley of Screamin’ Ridge Farm. “This will now allow us to expand our markets beyond Vermont’s borders.”

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 the Irasville Business Park 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.

Consumer appetite for locally raised meat and artisanal sausage is growing rapidly and the Mad River Food Hub is helping farmers, chefs and value-added producers tap into the expanding market.

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