Welcome to the Vermont Equipment Access Program  an important new resource for Vermont’s value added processors. The VtEAP is a revolving lease fund which helps you to find and finance the right food processing equipment for you as you grow!

The program is designed to:

  • Increase the consistency and quantity of your food product
  • Increase your daily production capacity
  • Increase the gross margin of your food business
  • Increase the amount of locally sourced (Vermont plus 30miles) products being made here

Who does the Vermont Equipment Access Program Serve? Now available to food processors incubating at Vermont’s two food hub facilities (Mad River Food Hub and Vermont Food Venture Center), the Vermont Equipment Access Program is designed to accelerate business growth by providing timely leases for specialized food producers.

The VEAP is designed as a revolving fund, so your lease payments go back to help the next food business to grow.

To learn more about the overall program, or to pass information along to others, download the Vermont Equipment Access Program Brochure

 

Eligibility Questions:

Applicants: The program is designed to accelerate growth of Vermont food businesses who have been using the food business incubators (Mad River Food Hub and Vermont Food Venture Center) for a period of not less than 3 months. We are looking for applicants who have shown commitment to seeking technical assistance, attending workshops and establishing positive business relationships. Applicants must also be committed to sourcing directly or indirectly from local farms/producers.

VEAP Applicant Checklist : Details on your eligibility

Equipment: The program will fund stand-alone Food Processing Equipment such as Food Mixers, Fillers, Steam Kettles, etc that directly improve product consistency, quality, and capacity. The program will lease used equipment, provided that the equipment has a warranty and/or the applicant can show that there is a robust service network within the state. Multiple pieces of equipment on one lease agreement are allowable, and applicant will be required to demonstrate that the business can afford the monthly payments on the equipment and that the specific equipment is appropriate for you businesses current stage of growth. Food business incubators may also be eligible to lease equipment, provided it will serve three or more food processors.

VEAP Application and Checklist : Application process and guidelines

Vermont Equipment Access Program Team

  • The Vermont Community Loan Fund is a nonprofit, mission-driven lender committed to healthy communities and financial stability for all Vermonters. Their role is to administer the leases to businesses and manage the revolving lease fund.
  • The Mad River Food Hub and the Vermont Food Venture Center are Vermont’s two food business incubators and food hub facilities. Their role is to help identify, support and recruit businesses for the program.
  • An external Review Committee, made up of business and agricultural experts across the state, will be responsible for reviewing your application and recommending your lease.

To learn more contact either Robin Morris at the Mad River Food Hub or Sarah Waring Center for an Agricultural Economy and home of the Vermont Food Venture Center. The goal of the program is to assist and accelerate the growth of Vermont food businesses, who are committed to sourcing locally, and who are growing their businesses within the state. Learn more today!