Anson Tebbetts: Cheers to our farmers, store employees this Thanksgiving

This commentary is by Anson Tebbetts, secretary of the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets.

As autumn winds down and our Green Mountain fields and forests prepare to rest, we give thanks for the bounty of the seasons. In the coming weeks, Vermont food will be at the center of the table as many of us celebrate with family and friends. Maybe the meal will begin with an appetizer plate arranged with Vermont’s award-winning cheeses, crackers, pickles, jams, and jellies; perhaps stacks of tasty local vegetables and meats grown and produced by our Vermont farmers and producers. On the table, a fresh Vermont turkey is paired with buttery mashed potatoes and many other sides. Once dinner concludes, our thoughts turn to Vermont-grown holiday trees and wreaths. We are fortunate to have so much.

While producing food and forest products, Vermont farmers keep our landscape open. Vermont would not be the state we love without our farmers; the beauty of the Green Mountain State is expressed through their stewardship of land, water, and animals. In winter, farmland sets the stage for skiing, snowshoeing, or snowmobiling. Farmers also provide vibrant habitat for hunting, with the chance to bag that buck during the fall or that turkey in the spring when Vermont turns green again. We are thankful for those contributions in every season.

We are also focused on Vermonters in need. From food banks to gleaners, restaurants to community and faith organizations, we are grateful for those who donate their time and resources at Thanksgiving and throughout the year. We are also grateful for those who will spend their day preparing and serving a locally sourced meal to those less fortunate.

Many Vermonters are vulnerable, and farmers are among them. Those who work the land are critical to our rural communities; they are stressed from unpredictable headwinds, the price of fuel, food, or fertilizer. We will continue to support them, help grow their operations, and encourage policies that make their businesses more affordable.

It takes a commitment of long hours to get products to our homes, and in addition to our farmers, we are grateful for retailers, store employees and those along the supply chain who make our Thanksgiving dinners so special. We honor all food systems stakeholders for their contributions to Vermont, the region, and the country.

We are all part of our Vermont community; we are all neighbors, supporting each other in so many ways. On this Thanksgiving Day, we raise a glass: cheers to our farmers for what they give us on this day, and every day.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/WsyedRBC
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One thought on “Anson Tebbetts: Cheers to our farmers, store employees this Thanksgiving

  1. With due respect, for the good intentions of your Thanksgivuing message…but it is all political,” feel-good-pablum”. The Far (angry) Left controls Vermont, and Montpelier is infested with small, well funded (out of state $$), Leftist Enviro activist groups – who yell & scream constantly. Things can only be done “their way” …OR ELSE. Vermont thus, really hates farmers. Can’t you see? Every enviro group headline is that “farmers destroy VT lakes”…but if you look at ANY lake with phosphate issues, there are into HUNDREDS of small camps …very close together, directly on the lakes..and many 80-100 years old…and most straight piped sewage INTO lakebeds very early on. If they stopped, they dug a hole behind the camp, maybe cut a 55 Gallon barrel in half, buried it…still CLOSE and seeps to the lake…for supposed septic. There are NO SEWERS by any of the issue lakes! It took decades for those septic phosphates to build up. But WHO get’s blamed? Farmers. These same anger-filled-groups mentioned to BAN dairy farming because cow methane might cause climate change?. Cow Farts? These are the same people who demand all we eat & grow is Organic and they demand farmers go organic. These same people demand no GMO seeds, but GMO’s seeds are fine and don’t need as much polluting fertilizer! These same gropus destroy BST, even though every glass of milk you drink, you GET BST from the cow anyway.

    Need we go on? How many new regulations from your department have crimped farmers in the last couple decades? The “Far Left” controls the VT Media, The Press, The Legislature and the schools, which indoctrinate children to their agendas ( I lived w/ my kids it!)….Every event and every climate change protest march, every placard.. So I hope you send your “feel-good-make-nice” Thanksgiving message to every Enviro activist in Montpeler & see if they will “come-together-make-nice”. I doubt it.

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