Just Cut Hardwick, VT
Just Cut is an innovative social enterprise of the Center for an Agricultural Economy that provides institutions and individuals direct access to high-quality, ready-to-use produce. Their unique model connects the abundant yields of Vermont farms to food buyers of any scale. They provide opportunities for food growers to reach new markets and maximize their farm's potential.
The CAE Farm-to-Institution Program began in 2012, during the first few years of the Vermont Food Venture Center (VFVC) operating in Hardwick. Its initial projects were co-packing arrangements in which local farms contracted the VFVC to minimally process and package their produce for the wholesale market. This relationship gave local farms the opportunity to produce new value-added products that they in turn sold and delivered directly to institutions and other wholesale buyers.
As demand for these products increased and more farms employed the program's services the leadership at CAE sought new ways to streamline and improve the experience for producers and buyers. In 2015 the CAE Farm-to-Institution Program formally changed to Just Cut, which in addition to maintaining its role as food processor also became the sole distributor - sales and delivery - of these goods.
This shift allowed Just Cut to expand its reach to larger institutions and to strategize with farmers on the best crops to grow to efficiently meet this increased demand.