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Innovation in Vermont - LACE
Local Agricultural Community Exchange

Wandering down rural Vermont country roads looking for a bite to eat, I happened upon the town of Barre, Vermont.

In the heart of downtown, there was a storefront proclaiming "LACE - Fresh Farm Foods". I thought I had died and gone to heaven! I was in heaven - Barre, Vermont a locavore's paradise.

Lacing the people back into the land that feeds themViewing the sign that proclaimed 2 Fresh Farm Eggs and Homemade Bread and Butter for $1.99 and the amazing children's menu I knew I had stumbled upon a very special place. After buying apples and dining on the fare of the day, a local mutton chili, I asked for a tour and fetched my video camera. I felt that the farmer and consumers across the nation would be very interested in what was happening within the four walls of LACE.

LACE stands for Local Agriculture Community Exchange, and it is a vibrant mix of for-profit (Fresh Food Market and Cafe') and non-profit (Artisan Gallery & Community Kitchen - featuring Business Incubation and Job Training). LACE's mission is to provide a commons where Vermont Family Farms and their communities can exchange information, celebrate food and build fellowship together.

After snagging the recipe for that delicious mutton chili, I was delighted that LACE Business Manager, Lorraine McBride, could give me a tour on a moments notice. Clearly Lorraine and LACE have a larger idea of community that their beautiful Vermont locale. Lorraine tells me that they consult with community groups from all over the country, wanting to learn more about their innovative approach to connecting their community back to the land.

To learn more, watch these videos, or take a ride and visit LACE yourself. Click here for their website.

Cathy Raymond, Fund Administrator

My First Impression

Mutton Chili & More

Farm Fresh Market Cafe'

Farm Fresh Market & Artisan Gallery

Non-Profit Artisan Gallery

Non-Profit Community Kitchen Business Incubator

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