ACEDC Wins Almost $60,000 in Economic Development Grants for Four Addison County Businesses

MIDDLEBURY, VT –  On September 16, Governor Scott and Chris Cole, Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Buildings and General Services (BGS) notified the Addison County Economic Development Corporation (ACEDC) that they were awarded $59,600 for Addison County businesses through the “Building Community” grant program for four projects in Bristol, Middlebury, Monkton, and Shoreham.

Depending on appropriations by the Vermont General Assembly, the program annually awards around $600,000 in matching grants statewide to municipalities and nonprofit organizations for capital costs associated with the major maintenance, renovation, and development of facilities in the following categories: human services, health care, and education; recreation; and economic development. Organizations in Addison County were awarded a total of $126,000 in all categories for the fiscal year 2020 funding round. 

ACEDC applied for, was awarded, and will administer the grants in the economic development category. The grant program requires that the funds be essential to the project’s success, that projects be “shovel ready,” demonstrate job creation or retention potential and, the business must provide a dollar for dollar match. 

For the Fiscal Year 2020 funding round, $59,600 was awarded to four Addison County businesses for the following projects: 

·       $14,000 to Agricola Meats, LLC, Middlebury: To renovate, fit-up and equip space on Exchange Street for specialty meat processing. 

·       $15,000 to Bristol Bakery & Café Wholesale, LLC, Bristol: To invest in new equipment for packaging;

·       $15,000 to Champlain Orchards, Shoreham: To upgrade their donut-making operation.

·       $15,600 to Wooden Hammer, LLC, Monkton: To renovate, fit-up and equip space to expand a woodworking and cabinetry business.

 “We are extremely appreciative of the continued support provided by ACEDC and this BGS grant,” said Alessandra Rellini, owner of Agricola Meats. “Cured meat is becoming a major trend in the country and through this project, we are able to highlight the exceptional work our farmers do and place Vermont on market shelves throughout New England and beyond while supporting our current landscape. It is a win-win-win situation!”

 “These funds have been critical to the on-boarding of a new, large customer with specialized packaging needs” stated Kevin Harper, Owner of Bristol Bakery. “Now we can provide a full range of manufacturing services from our ovens to the retail shelf.”

 “We are grateful for the support of ACEDC and BGS,” said Bill Suhr, Owner of Champlain Orchards. “Upgrading and relocating our wholesale apple cider donut equipment from our Farm Market to our main production facility building will improve our operation efficiency, working conditions, and customer experience when visiting our Farm Market.”

 "My woodworking business had been limited by the size and location of my shop for several years,” said Ben Raphael, owner of Wooden Hammer. “ACEDC has been a key resource in helping me take the next step towards expanding into a new location. Not only did they work with me to obtain this grant, but they played a big role in securing the rest of the business loans needed for the project."

Contact information:

Addison County Economic Development Corporation: Fred Kenney, Executive Director. or (802) 777-8349

Agricola Meats, LLC: Alessandra Rellini, Owner. (802)777-4289; 

Bristol Bakery & Café Wholesale, LLC: Kevin Harper, Owner.  (802)453-5920;

Champlain Orchards, LLC; Bill Suhr, Owner. (802)897-2777;

Wooden Hammer, LLC: Ben Raphael, Owner. (802)310-1044;

Pictured are Stefano Pinna, Eva Rellini, and Alessandra Rellini of Agricola Meats, with Michael Corbett, VEDA Loan Officer, Jamison Kimberly, VACC Deputy Director of Agricultural Lending; Fred Kenney Executive Director, ACEDC; and Sarah Kearns, VtSBDC Advisor.
Photo by Addison Independent


Employees of Wooden Hammer working on a renovation project.



Bill Suhr (father), Andrea Scott (mother), Rupert Suhr (son) and Rosa Suhr (daughter) of Champlain Orchards

Jessica Bowen and Eldon Atkins, employees of Bristol Bakery installing new equipment