The backbone of Vermont’s heritage and economic viability is its working landscape. This “working landscape” is comprised of agriculture, food systems, forestry, and forest product-based businesses. About 20% of Vermont’s land is used for agriculture while another 78% is forested.
In 2012 the Vermont Legislature made a commitment to support Vermonters' values by passing the Working Lands Enterprise Initiative for the management and investment of $1 million into agriculture and forestry-based businesses. The Initiative called for the creation of the Working Lands Enterprise Fund (WLEF) and the Working Lands Enterprise Board (WLEB). The WLEB is composed of private-sector members at all levels of the agriculture and forestry supply chains; the Vermont Agency of Agriculture; Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation; Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development; Vermont Housing Conservation Board; Vermont Economic Development Authority; and Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund.
To learn more about the initiatives and funding opportunities, visit the Working Land Enterprise Initiative.