Fire at Hinesburg cheese plant could hurt farmers who supplied milk

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The fire that disabled a Hinesburg cheese plant last month could cause problems for dairy farmers who supplied milk to the facility.

Officials say before the Sept. 29 fire, the Saputo Cheese USA plant was receiving about a million pounds of milk a day from 88 dairy farmers in western Vermont and New York through a contract with Agri-Mark Cabot Inc.

Farmers are hoping the plant will be able to reopen within about two months.

Meanwhile, they want to find new markets without significantly increasing transportation costs.

The Saputo plant in Hinesburg makes mozzarella and other specialty and shredded cheeses. At the time of the fire, the plant employed about 100 people.

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