Farm to Plate

Local food advocates talk about the energy wasted transporting food long distances. But there are a lot of other ways energy is spent getting food to our tables. And by some measurements, transporting food long distances, could actually be more efficient than local production.

Eric Garza is a lecturer at the Rubenstein School for Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont. He studies the energy inputs and outputs of small farms in Vermont, helping them to become more efficient. He spoke with Vermont Edition about the energy used in our agricultural systems.

Charlotte Albright

Roadside stands, farmers markets, and local food restaurants abound in Vermont, and one reason for that abundance is the Farm to Plate Strategic Plan. The Legislature mandated this plan in 2009, and since that time, there has been a statewide effort to coordinate all aspects of the local food system- from agricultural jobs, to land availability, to meat processing, to farmers markets. It's a big effort and it has started to bear some fruit.