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Owner of Prominent Vermont Dairy Farm Files for Bankruptcy

13:59PM Sep 11, 2017

Empty Dairy Parlor( Wyatt Bechtel/Farm Journal Media )

The owner of one of Vermont's most prolific dairy farms has filed for bankruptcy protection.

The Burlington Free Press reports Michael LaClair, owner of the Nordic Farms dairy operation, filed last month. LaClair listed $2.1 million in debt.

LaClair purchased the Charlotte dairy operation from Clark Hinsdale III in February 2014. Hinsdale still owns the property the farm sits on.

The Vermont Economic Development Authority loaned LaClair $1 million through the Vermont Agricultural Creditor Corp. program. Hinsdale is also owed nearly $500,000. Other creditors include agricultural companies.

Nordic Farms was the first New England farm to use robotic milking machines. Hinsdale says the operation has suffered from low milk prices and longer industry downturns.

The Vermont Agricultural Mediation Program is now working with the farm to find a solution.