New York State Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard Ball encouraged institutions in the Hudson Valley to “take advantage of the abundant agricultural products grown and produced in New York in providing meals to their customers,” at the Hudson Valley Farm to Institution Summit held at SUNY New Paltz on October 16. “This Summit helps connect schools, markets, hospitals and other institutions with our state’s world class agricultural producers, while providing an opportunity for New York agriculture to expand its range of business,” said Commissioner Ball.
David Haight, New York State Director for American Farmland Trust said, “Millions of New Yorkers are fed meals each year by institutions – from school children, to college students and seniors. Encouraging these institutions to buy more food produced in New York creates markets for local farmers and benefits eaters too. This Summit is bringing together community leaders from across the Hudson Valley to talk about the greatest challenges and opportunities for scaling up the farm to institution movement in the region.” Read More
University and college students across New York State will celebrate National Food Day tomorrow with the inaugural NY Campus Crunch, taking a collective bite out of apples grown on New York State farms in demonstration of their support for serving locally grown food in campus cafeterias.
“Why is it important to eat local?” asks Radha Urribarri, a sophomore at the University at Albany, where students bit into apples grown on Yonder Farms in Valatie, and Indian Ladder Farms in Altamont, New York. Many students are looking for ways to reduce their environmental impact and consuming locally produced food lowers your carbon footprint by decreasing the amount of miles the food is transported. In addition, purchasing local food supports your community and economy plus it tastes better.” Read More
Warwick, New York, October 9, 2014 — With roughly 30 percent of Hudson Valley farmland managed by farmers over age 65, a significant amount of farmland must be transferred to the next generation of farmers or lost forever to real estate development. The newly launched Hudson Valley Farmlink Network will offer resources for senior farmers, next generation farmers, and landowners to help keep the region’s farmland in agricultural production.
Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney applauded the Hudson Valley Farmlink Network today on his visit to Wright Family Farm in Warwick, NY, co-hosted by Orange County Land Trust, a local Hudson Valley Farmlink Network partner. Read More
This September, American Farmland Trust (AFT) and other partners in the Hudson Valley Farmlink Network (HVFN) are coordinating three workshops to facilitate farm transfers and improve land access for the next generation of Hudson Valley farmers. In two of the workshops, one in Dutchess County, and one in Westchester County, farmers and owners of agricultural land will learn about farm leasing. “One of the biggest challenges facing the next generation of farmers in the Hudson Valley is access to farmland,” said David Haight, New York State Director of American Farmland Trust. “A farmland lease is an effective tool but leasing involves risk for both the farmer and the landowner.” The workshops will address basic elements of a good farm lease and sharing of on-the-ground experiences with farm leases. Farmer-landowner networking sessions will follow the panel discussions to facilitate connections between farmers, landowners, attorneys, land trusts, agricultural service providers and others. Read More
Photo by: The Greenhorns
The New York State Senate passed legislation earlier this summer — supported by American Farmland Trust — to improve access to farmland for beginning farmers. The state Assembly passed the bill in February, and the next step is for the Assembly to send the bill to Governor Cuomo for his signature.
American Farmland Trust conducted research and engaged young farmers and state legislators to draft the bill.
Sponsored by Assemblyman Bill Magee and Senator Patty Ritchie, the legislation would require state agencies to inventory state-owned farmland that could be made available to farmers, enhance access to this land for farming and take other steps for the state to facilitate farm transfers and access to land for beginning farmers. Tell Governor Cuomo that helping the next generation of farmers matter to you.