Since 2003, the Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program (VFFVP) has offered business planning and technical assistance to enterprises that keep Vermont's working landscape in production. These include: farm businesses of all sizes and sectors; food system businesses that process, store, market, or distribute local agricultural products; and forestry and forest products businesses such as woodlots, consulting forestry firms, loggers, sawmill and kiln operations, craftsmen and manufacturers. Services are also available to non-timber forest products enterprises, such as maple producers.
Our Service Model
We match participating enterprises with organizations or consultants that have the specific skills to provide our participants assistance with their business needs. We then contract these organizations or consultants to provide on-site, one-on-one, custom-tailored assistance for participants and follow up on the progress being made. Services are provided free of charge, following a $75 enrollment fee. In some cases, if the scope of work is larger than what the program can cover, participants will need to contribute to the consultancy fees.
After participating in our program, more than half of participants report a high level of strategic planning skills, and almost all participants exit the program with a clear vision for where their business is going. Participants report they are able to place more energy on the quality of their work, and personally, half report that they find themselves satisfied with their ability to balance workload and family life. The following graphic provides data on the impact that our program has had on participating businesses. More information can be found in our annual reports.