Interested in writing a story for Local Banquet that explores agriculture in Vermont? Great plan. Here are some guidelines.

Please pitch a story first using the contact us form, don't send a final version for consideration. If you want to submit a story idea but not actually write the story, that's fine too - just make it clear in your message. Content falls into the following categories:

Feature Stories ~1,200 words Features should inform readers about important topics in Vermont food and agriculture. They should also be enjoyable to read, all features include a narrative element and are on topics that will still be interesting a year from now (ie not a daily news headline).

Personal Perspectives on Agriculture in Vermont ~400 words The personal perspective may be your own or a profile of somebody else’s, in either event it should offer readers a unique glimpse through another person’s eyes in a short essay style.

"Set the Table With. . . " Profiles of Interesting Ingredients, ~ 300 words plus recipes / preparation instructions. We aren’t a cooking blog, what makes an ingredient interesting for our purposes is less about culinary trends and more about agronomy, emerging businesses, interesting historical production notes. . . something tied in to its production. We ask that all recipes please be tested.

Bits and Pieces Pictures, audio clips, short video that show pieces of agriculture from every corner of Vermont. These are not compensated.

Every contribution should come with at least one photo (from your phone is perfectly fine). It will need a horizontal orientation for the front page. Ingredients profiles should come with a collection of several photos to choose from.

All of our content is either particular to Vermont or has a Vermont tie-in that is clearly expressed in the article. Being anchored in Vermont does not mean that the world of the story should end at our borders, however - features writers in particular are encouraged to explore how their topic has implications for the larger food system. Below is a more detailed description of the content we publish.

  • Articles that take a deeper look at topics outside of the news cycle. This includes analyzing agricultural issues that are not in the headlines, but that illustrate important elements of policy, economics, agronomy, business, environmental impact, and rural community development to help us understand the news more deeply.
  • Articles offering reflective commentary that gives unique perspectives on agriculture in our daily lives.
  • Articles written in an approachable narrative style, but with a professional tone.
  • Articles that can shape how readers engage with Vermont agriculture on a daily basis, but are not “lifestyle” pieces. Similarly, we are not a culinary food magazine - recipes illustrate ingredients being profiled or are an “extra” enhancing a larger feature story, not a core part of our material.
  • Articles that describe the work of advocates and organizations advancing agricultural causes, but are not themselves lobbying on behalf of a particular platform. We will ask that many sides of an issue be considered and that all authors inform us of professional / personal affiliations connected to their subject. We may publish clearly designated opinion pieces, however that form of commentary is not the primary focus.
  • Articles that are designed to inspire curiosity about and greater engagement in the Vermont food system.

Vermont agriculture is a topic covered by other publications, in print and digital formats. There are news organizations, publications designed for practitioners working in the food system, and general interest publications focused on lifestyle and the culinary side of Vermont food. However, there continues to be space for strong, thoughtful writing that uses both story and critical analysis to illuminate what is happening in Vermont agriculture outside of the headlines and beyond our own kitchens. Local Banquet provides that content.

What we do

Our stories, interviews, and essays reveal how Vermont residents are building their local food systems, how farmers are faring in a time of great opportunity and challenge, and how Vermont’s agricultural landscape ties into larger questions of sustainability and the future of our food supply.