News Releases

June 06, 2011

Ski Vermont Contributes Its First Donation to Keep Local Farms

Jay Peak Resort welcomed more than 100 Vermont state officials, food industry and agricultural heads from 11 northeast states for Ski Vermont’s presentation of a contribution of $8,495 to the Keep Local Farms program at the opening night of the annual Northeast Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NEASDA) reception Sunday, June 5.

“The skiing and farming economies run deep throughout our local communities and working together is vital to ensure the future success of these two iconic Vermont industries,” Ski Vermont President Parker Riehle said.

“Vermont’s agricultural heritage is the very essence of our unique and enviable brand identity and that’s why Vermont’s ski areas are proud to expand upon our longtime partnership with our dairy farmers by donating the proceeds from our youth skiing program, the Ski Vermont Fifth Grade Passport, to the Keep Local Farms initiative.”

Riehle presented the contribution to Jane Clifford, President of New England Family Dairy Farms Cooperative, who also remarked that Vermont’s ski and agricultural industries support education and Vermont’s heritage at a crucial time for the state and its farmers.

“Keep Local Farms is one way for businesses and consumers to help support our dairy economy and in term our open working landscape that draws thousands to visit our state each year. We sincerely appreciate Ski Vermont’s recognition f the important contributions our farmers make to our culture and economy,” said Diane Bothfeld Deputy Secretary of Agriculture.

Ski Vermont's Fifth Grade Passport program enabled 2400 children to ski free at all partner resorts in the 2010-11 season and Ski Vermont pledged to continue to donate proceeds from the passport’s $10 processing fee to support New England dairy farmers in the 2011-12 season.

About the Associations and Programs:

KEEP LOCAL FARMS is part of a broad effort to educate consumers about the value of local dairy farms and also to raise funds to support New England dairy farms. Keep Local Farms is partnering with retailers, universities and businesses to support local dairy farmers and the products they produce while increasing the demand for local milk. The program was developed by the Vermont Dairy Promotion Council, New England Family Dairy Farms Cooperative and New England Dairy Promotion Board. Please visit

NEASDA is part of the larger National Association of State Departments of Agriculture whose mission it is to represent the states’ departments of agriculture in the development, implementation, and communication of sound public policy and programs. The organizations work to support and promote the American agricultural industry while protecting consumers and the environment. The Jay Peak Resort meeting marks the first time in nearly a dozen years that the annual summit has been held in Vermont.

“Agriculture has always been a way of life in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont,” remarked Resort President Bill Stenger. “At Jay Peak, we’ve tried to shine a light on that community’s contribution, whether it’s through our weekly tours of the Couture Farm or our twenty-three years strong Farmers’ Appreciation Day, where any Vermont farmer gets to ski for free.”

SKI VERMONT serves its 18 Alpine and 30 Nordic member resorts in three major areas: governmental affairs, marketing and public affairs. It is a private non-profit trade association founded in 1969 to foster a legislative, economic and social environment in which the state's ski industry can grow and prosper. The association’s priorities include environmental integrity, enhancing economic and social contributions to the state's welfare, and promoting Vermont as the premier destination for winter tourism. For more information on the resorts and Ski Vermont’s Fifth Grade Passport program, please visit

Source: Agency of Agriculture
Last Updated at: June 06, 2011 16:13:18