• Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org
  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation
  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion
  • Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org

    We've changed our website. Please update your bookmarks to LocalBanquet.org LocalBanquet.org is where you will now find the latest Local Banquet stories, a new Story of the Day update feature, features from the archives, and information on how to contribute to Local Banquet if you're interested in writing about Vermont agriculture. 

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  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation

    Back in 2007, Local Baquet ran an article by Bonnie Hudspeth on maple innovation and production in Vermont. Since then, maple production in Vermont has tripled to 1.8 million gallons a year and innovation seems to have entered a new golden (or perhaps amber) age. We did a quick maple innovation news round up for 2018 / 2019 to help everyone keep up with the some of the trends. 

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  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion

    In 2015, the USDA funded a project for UVM researchers to engage in discussions with Vermont farmers about the idea of being paid for ecosystem services. Ecosystem services are things farmers do that improve the environment for everyone, a common example is grass-based farms capturing carbon in the soil as a way to combat climate change. Some services happen naturally through sustainable farming, others take more of an incentive to implement, and either way some policy makers believe that farmers shoudl be compensated for their contribution. 

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Succotash With Sweet Corn And Horticultural Beans

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New Englanders usually made succotash using horticultural beans, also known as “shell beans.” Adapted from: 1896 Boston Cooing-School Cookbook by Fannie Merritt Farmer (Gramercy, 1997).


  • shell beans
  • corn
  • salt
  • butter


Prepare shell beans by removing the beans from their pods. Cook for 1 minute in a pressure cooker, or 15 to 25 minutes in a tightly covered saucepan in salted water, 1 inch deep. Take an equal amount of corn and heat the beans and corn together. Use fresh corn that has been stripped from the cob, canned corn or frozen corn. If you use fresh corn, boil it on the cob for a few minutes, then slice it off. Season with salt and butter.

Today it takes a bit of work to find local sources of the corn and beans grown by our ancestors. Flint corn seed can be ordered from FEDCO or High Mowing Seeds. Butterworks Farm in Westfield will offer yellow-eye, Jacob’s cattle, and Vermont cranberry beans in September. You can find them at some coops or call the farm at (802) 744-6855. Some general stores sell soldier beans grown within New England.

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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.