Hannaford Supermarkets to help New England farmers

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QUINCY, Mass. (AP) — Hannaford Supermarkets is becoming the first major retail chain to back a program designed to help New England’s troubled dairy farmers make more money and stay in business.

Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources Commissioner Scott Soares is set to announce Tuesday that Hannaford will stock locally produced milk and dairy products.

The program seeks to encourage New England residents to buy local products after about 150 small farmers went out of business due to rising costs to produce milk and dairy products and shrinking profits. The initiative will also provide additional money directly to area farmers.

Soares says Hannaford’s 171 stores in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont will provide major exposure for the initiative.

Similar announcements will be made in Maine and Vermont.