U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $3 Million to Boost Agriculture and Tourism Sectors in Hardwick, Vermont
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $3 million grant to the town of Hardwick, Vermont, to restore the historic Yellow Barn Accelerator facility and construct a new building for the local agricultural and forestry industries. The EDA grant will provide opportunities to leverage the emerging food tourism sector and will be matched with $4.8 million in state and local funds.
“President Trump champions the farmers and food manufacturers who drive our country’s agricultural economy,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “In addition to providing current food and forestry tenants with production and storage space, the project will include a visitors center program that will enable businesses to capitalize on food tourism opportunities.”
“This project is essential to developing the agricultural economy in Vermont,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This grant will provide the Yellow Barn Accelerator with critical infrastructure, such as parking, commercial loading, and utilities, needed to support tenants working to bring Vermont products to market.”
“This is a transformative investment in the Yellow Barn project that promises to be a game-changer for business activity in the Northeast Kingdom,” said Senator Patrick Leahy, Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “Vermont has a culture of entrepreneurial activity, particularly around local food. Through this federal grant more businesses will be able to scale up their production, strengthening the local economy in the Hardwick area.”
About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.