Sailing Vermont Farmers Market – By Harold Wessell

MECHANICVILLE, June 26 – In a time when "snail mail" is a glibly uttered – and still found inaccurate  at times –  put-down of a centuries-old mode of delivery that by tech-era standards takes too much time, an initiative by a  Vermont farmer is bringing back a viable alternative to the truck: delivery by boat.

Not just a boat, a sail boat – and one that looks a lot like a canal barge, at that. "Delivered by Sail" is part of the logo of the Vermont Freight Sale Project Erik Andrus heads up.

Andrus farms high up along Lake Champlain – a rice farmer in Vermont of all things, in fact the biggest Japanese rice farmer in the Northeast USA. "I used to grow wheat and rye and barley," he began. "Then with rainfall arriving in more and more torrential amounts and my fields being very heavy soil and wet... I shifted over to rice!"

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