Berlin’s Farming Industry Facing Hard Times, But Change Could Be Coming

Despite a growing trend in organic production nationwide, the town’s agriculture industry has continued to struggle to make ends meet.

Credit: Patch.
Credit: Patch.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that the industry is growing, relying heavily of the growing desire for organic foods nationwide – but don’t tell that to farmers in the Berlin area.

Farms across the community and in nearby towns have struggled to compete and build sustainable business and clauses and limitations within the town’s zoning regulations aren’t making things any easier, several farmers told the Berlin Town Council earlier this year.

The Berlin Citizen reported
that despite efforts to affect change in recent years, local farmers are still struggling to find ways to grow their businesses.

“It hasn’t been possible to drive an income that would sustain us. So, consequently, we are very interested in the future of agriculture in this town,” Diane Jorsey, owner of DeMaria Farms in Kensington with her husband David, told the Berlin Town Council according to an article in the Berlin Ctizen.

Jorsey said that for farms and agriculture businesses to survive in the area, a change is needed in Berlin zoning regulations to allow for more plausible expansion.

A three-year effort led the town to recently adopt a Plan of Conservation and Development, according to documents on the town website, and the focus into the future will be to further adapt changes that will best support the town in a time of need.

Mayor Adam Salina said development of agriculture will be important, not only to expand the base economy in Berlin, but to prevent existing farms from going under and becoming sub-divisions that cost the town by increasing service needs rather than bring in a source of tax revenue.

For more, check out the Berlin Citizen story.

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