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Film Explores the Role of Dairy Farms

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In the renaissance of local food, dairy producers are often overlooked. Upper Valley milk may travel hundreds of miles to be processed before returning in cartons with out-of-state labels to be consumed by people who live only a few miles from the farm. So is it local?

UVLT and the Co-op Food Stores are teaming up to screen the new movie “Forgotten Farms” at the Briggs Opera House in White River Junction. The film looks at several New England family dairy farms and explores intersections of community, farm policy, land use and economics.

New England has lost more than 80% of its dairy farms in the last fifty years. Today less than 120 New Hampshire farms are shipping milk into the commodity market. “Dairy farms get very little attention, especially compared to the sort of boutique farms that are getting an overwhelming amount of attention in the press,” says producer Sarah Gardner, who is the associate director of Williams College’s Center for Environmental Studies. “Yet those farms produce a relatively small proportion of the food that we consume, while the traditional dairy farms produce almost all of the milk that’s consumed in New England.”

Join us to examine the role of family dairy in the Upper Valley and its future. Tickets are $9 online (click here), $10 at the door. Doors open at 6:30 PM for light refreshments, film begins at 7:00 PM, followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers and local farmers.