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Vermont Family Forests
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Conserving The Health Of Our Local Forest Community

Community-supported Forestry Model

Vermont’s traditional forest industry model is linear and vertical, with forests and unempowered stewards at the bottom. In the conventional timber harvest model, harvesting trees from "family forests" generally yields less than $25 per acre per year from the sale of standing trees into undifferentiated commodity markets. This small annual return often fails to cover the costs of forest ownership, not to mention the costs of forest stewardship.

VFF’s Community-supported Forestry model is circular, beginning with and returning to the forest and its surrounding community. A fully monitored timber harvest, carried out in accordance with VFF’s Forest Health Conservation Checklist, removes carefully selected trees from the forest; the wood passes through a series of local value adders (loggers, truckers, mill and kiln-drier operators); the landowner is compensated at rates significantly higher than traditional stumpage rates; and loggers receive substantially more for their excellent work. These economic incentives, in turn, encourage perpetuation of the ecological management that promotes forest health.

To view a full-scale model, click here.