Vermont News Briefs

Kale – Vermont’s new state vegetable? Or another way to help local artist beat Chik-fil-A?

What is Vermont’s allegiance to kale?

For starters, Gov. Peter Shumlin formed “Team Kale” in 2011 to help Green Mountain folk artist Bo Muller-Moore fend off a lawsuit from Atlanta-based Chick-fil-A. The fast-food chain was after Muller-Moore for popularizing the slogan “Eat More Kale” by printing it on T-shirts and stickers. The phrase hit a little too close to home for the corporation, as its trademarked slogan is “Eat Mor Chikin.”

Now, three senators want to make kale the official state vegetable of Vermont.

Earlier this week, Progressive Sens. Anthony Pollina and David Zuckerman joined Republican Bill Doyle in introducing bill S. 64, titled “An Act Relating to Designating Kale as the State Vegetable.”

Zuckerman knows a thing or two about kale, since he grows it commercially on his organic farm, Full Moon Farm in Hinesburg.


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  • Laurie grimm

    You have got to be kidding. Mr. Pollina, Mr. Doyle and Mr. Zuckerman need to get a life. Kale is not a state veggie for Vermont. What a fad. Pick something like Corn or Zucchini. Kale…that belongs in California or something.

  • Lisa Fisher

    Real Vermonters don’t eat kale, might eat dandelion greens but not kale. A state vegetable really and we are going to choose kale? That ranks right up there with the idea that if we let people have the moose that get killed by traffic accidents go to people , more people will run over moose with their cars. Need I say anymore?

    • Karl Riemer

      No, you need to say less.

      Kale is the logical Vermont state vegetable. It’s intensely nutritious and cold-hardy. It’s beautiful in an abundant, exuberant, vegetable way (as opposed to a pretty, delicate, floral way). Best of all, though it has requirements like anyone else, paying attention to those requirements allows anybody to grow it, even in less-than-ideal conditions during a less-than-ideal year. You want reliable home-grown vitamins? That’s kale.
      Kale is the king of vegetables in this climate and Vermonters who don’t grow it, or don’t eat it, are entitled to their preferences but aren’t more “real” for those preferences, especially if their preferences are only based on not knowing what they’re talking about.

  • Go Kale!

  • Kathy Leonard

    How do I love kale? Let me count the ways…..

    My freezer is stocked with kale from our garden… High in iron, rich in vitamins and a major crop in Vermont’s home and CSA’S gardens.
    Kale is tasty and versatile and can be picked from July into November. An excellent choice!

  • Fred Woogmaster

    Certainly the naming of kale can be justified in many ways;
    what about FIDDLEHEADS? Not a vegetable? Some would say that fiddleheads are tastier than kale, regardless of the cooking.
    What say the Vermont Fiddlehead Association on this matter?
    Are you prepared to go up against the KALE lobby? I look forward to the legislative hearings on the matter.

    • Karl Riemer

      Perhaps Vermont could use an official State Wild Gleaning.
      Uh-oh, I think I just heard a harrumph! from the ramp partisan over in the corner.

  • Pam Ladds

    Right on! And whether or not anyone thinks Kale an appropriate choice, fighting back against Corporate Bullies Chick-fil_A is an excellent idea. They went after Eat More Kale artist Bo Muller-Moore (who had had the logo for years) claiming that people – us, you and I, consumers apparently without minds, were too stupid to know the difference between kale and chicken. Even those who are dislikers of the leafy green vegetable have to know it is an improvement on Frankenchicken!! Go Kale, and Go Vermont

  • Anne Brigham

    bravo kale! as healthy as our green state.

  • Michael Gardner

    so we have 6 billion in unfunded liabilities and this is their priority??? You have got to be kidding me!

  • Fred Woogmaster

    For the record:
    I fully support Bo and EAT MORE KALE!

  • Paul Donovan

    As much as I support Bo and kale, I’d like to suggest we may already have enough “official” Vermont things: seal, coat, animal, insect, warm water fish, cold water fish, gem, mineral, butterfly, flower, tree, three (!) state rocks, quarter, soil, beverage, flag, fossil, fruit, pie and song. I understand there’s an effort to name “shelter dogs” the State Dog, and Subaru is calling itself the “unofficial” State Car. When is enough enough?

    • Karl Riemer

      Well, we don’t know, yet. We’re trying to find out.

      I’m holding out for an official state State. That being, I’ll advocate: Grace.

  • Andrea McAuslan

    While I agree that this exercise in democracy is a bit unnecessary, it is fun. And by the end of January, I, personally, can use a bit of that.

    While kale may be a fine vegetable, I do think we must make the Gilfeather Turnip the state vegetable. Believed to be developed right here in Vermont, it does have almost a cult-like following.

    Go Gilfeather Turnip!!

  • Jim McGurn

    Real Vermonter. Eats kale.