Intervale Food Hub

Driven By: Farmer Run. Activities: Community Supported Agriculture and Wholesale Distribution. Locations: USA. Location Detail: Vermont. Stage: Established. Business Model: Non-profit. Function: Aggregation, Distribution, and Education & Training.

Creating a link between local farmers and the local marketplace

The Intervale Food Hub markets and distributes local vegetables, fruits, meats, eggs, cheeses and specialty products. Their goal is to provide the greater Burlington community with convenient access to high quality foods while returning a fair price to farmers.

The Food Hub serves individuals and businesses through a multi-farm Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. In addition, the Food Hub facilitates farm connections to wholesale buyers including retailers, restaurants and institutions.

Community Supported Agriculture is a mutual commitment between local farmers and community members. CSA members provide a stable market and fair compensation for farmers. In return, farmers provide CSA members with a weekly share of the harvest during the local growing season. This relationship symbolizes a shared commitment to building a more local and equitable food system, one that enhances farm viability, land stewardship and community engagement.

The Intervale Food Hub was developed by the Intervale Centre:

Which engages farmers and eaters at every step of the supply chain of
local food, from pre-production planning to post-consumer waste disposal.

»Mission: Develop farm and land-based enterprises that generate economic and social opportunity while protecting natural resources

» Started with 350 acres of degraded land, a compost pile and a vision to produce 10% of
local food needs. The composting operation and inspiring the development of small
farms generated enough cash flow to set up the Intervale Centre.

One of the major focuses is on farm enterprise development and incubation.
» Key programs:

  • Farms program (founded 1990) – removes start-up barriers and leases land, equipment, irrigation and storage facilities to small independent farms (on-site). The 12 (13?) farms produce 10% of Burlington’s fresh produce on 120 acres of land. They employ 60 people (FT, PT and seasonal)
  • Intervale Food Hub (2007) followed by multi-farmer CSA in 2008, grew 85% in 2009. Partners with 24 farmers to reach 200 members and 16 local businesses.
  • Community connections: Healthy City Youth Farm (education and jobs); gleaning project delivering 30,000 pounds of food to FoodBank; school food project etc – working with at risk youth