Celebrating Local Sourcing Success in Vermont

About the author : Phil Harty

Vice President of Sales

Published on : 2/23/24
  • It’s been nearly 10 years since we launched the Vermont First initiative, which is dedicated to increasing local and regional sourcing. I’m so proud of the work Sodexo has done in the Northeast over the last decade to develop relationships with Vermont-based growers, fisheries, producers, and distributors, helping them gain access to new opportunities and expand their businesses. Since 2014, Vermont First has helped bolster the state’s economy while increasing the number of delicious, sustainable local foods served at Sodexo partner sites across the state. 

    Sodexo was honored to host the Northeast Organic Farming Association’s 41st annual Winter Conference at University of Vermont on February 17, 2024. Our chefs created inspired menus that showcased local and organic foods at the event, which welcomed more than 700 attendees. Guests dined on miche bread, cottage pie, carrot cupcakes and more while coming together to share ideas and exchange success stories around local, sustainable sourcing.


    A highlight of the event was a video that showcased one of the many recent success stories in Vermont. In 2022, the Henry P. Kendall Foundation awarded a New England Food Vision Prize grant to Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont, Vermont Bean Crafters and Sodexo at University of Vermont to support their collaborative effort to increase the use of local, organic black beans in the state. The grant enabled the team to invest in new equipment and infrastructure to help local farmers grow more black beans for serving at educational institutions in Vermont.

    The event was a wonderful way to showcase how far we’ve come in our efforts to increase local sourcing in Vermont. It was also a great reminder of the very real impacts our decisions have on the people in our communities. Like many attendees, I came away with a renewed and reinvigorated commitment to Sodexo’s goals to prioritize local, sustainable products whenever possible. I know there is more we can do, and I look forward to sharing all we have learned with the new communities we serve.