Saturday, March 21, 2009

YAK TRACKS: Yakking About Meat Inspection

Or, Vermont Yak Company begins to 'get political.' Here's a copy of the letter we sent to our state representative, a friend and neighbor who is cutting his teeth at the statehouse this legislative session.

Adam Greshin
611 Eurich Pond Rd.
Warren, VT 05674

March 19, 2009

Dear Adam,

We are writing on behalf of Vermont Yak Company and small meat producers in Vermont. It has come to our attention that Governor Douglas, as part of his upcoming budget, has proposed to drastically reduce or completely do away with the Vermont Meat Inspection program. We strongly urge you to consider keeping this valuable program alive and well for the health and safety of all Vermonters and for the viability of small farms throughout the state.

This department of the Agency of Agriculture not only helps to keep the meat supply in this state safe for all consumers, but it is an invaluable resource for all meat producers needing guidance and information. As a new business Vermont Yak Company has called on the office a number of times to get clarification on meat processing, standards for inspection, packaging, storage and licensing for distribution of our product.

Vermont currently has eight slaughter operations to support all the meat producers in the state. If the office is eliminated that number will be drastically reduced sending the meat growers out of state or out of business. The state of New Hampshire no longer has a state supported meat inspection program and they have one slaughter operation. The state of Maine has a state supported program and they have thirteen facilities. I think you can see where this is going. Vermont needs to keep our local meat producers right here in Vermont. Without state funding for the Meat Inspection program that will be near impossible.

Please consider designing and voting for programs and initiatives that make greater localization of food production, processing, and sales possible.


Susan & Ted Laskaris
David Harthorn
Kate & Rob Williams
Vermont Yak Company
Route 100
Waitsfield, VT 05673

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