Discusses New “Grown in New York” Plan, Other Initiatives to Help Farmers
Members of State Senator Patty Ritchie’s Agricultural Advisory Council met today in Ogdensburg to discuss the accomplishments of the past year and new initiatives to help farmers, including the Senator’s new “Grown in NY” plan.
“Our farmers are the backbone of New York State’s economy, and it’s so important that we give them the tools they need to create jobs and expand their industry ” Senator Ritchie said.
“My advisory council has the firsthand knowledge and insight as to how we can help support agriculture. This group is—and will be crucial—to helping the Senate Agriculture Committee continue its commitment to helping our farmers.”
Many people think of Memorial Day as the “unofficial” start to summer. But, for me, there’s something else that signals the start of the season: the opening of farmers markets across Central and Northern New York.
From fresh corn and crisp apples, to delicious pies and salt potatoes the farmers markets that dot our region are not only an opportunity to eat tasty, local, nutritious food they’re a great way to support New York State’s hardworking farmers too.
Plan Would Support Local Farmers, Improve Nutrition in Prisons, Hospitals
The State Senate today approved legislation sponsored by Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Patty Ritchie that seeks to boost the amount of locally produced food sold to state prisons, hospitals and other facilities.
State Senator Patty Ritchie met recently with Department of Agriculture and Markets Acting Commissioner James Bays in Albany to discuss supporting New York’s hardworking farmers and expanding opportunities for those in the industry.
Hosted by Senator Patty Ritchie and the Jefferson County Agricultural Development Council
In an effort to help farmers and others in the agriculture industry grow their businesses, State Senator Patty Ritchie—in conjunction with the Jefferson County Agricultural Development Council—will host a free Agricultural Grant Opportunity Workshop on Thursday, December 12th.
Featuring information on a variety of funding and loan programs, the event will take place from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County, located at 203 North Hamilton Street in Watertown.
“As Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, it’s a top priority for me to find ways to help farmers meet the challenges they face and help them grow New York State’s already thriving agriculture economy,” said Senator Ritchie.
State Senator Patty Ritchie joined delegates, members and supporters of the New York Farm Bureau at the organization’s State Annual Meeting, held this week in Liverpool, NY.
Senator Ritchie—who chairs the New York State Senate Agriculture Committee—is a member of the Farm Bureau’s “Circle of Friends” list, comprised of legislators who show exemplary support for New York agriculture and the Farm Bureau.
State Senator Patty Ritchie has released the annual report of the New York State Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture—which she chairs—detailing the activities of the Committee in 2013.
“Agriculture is our state’s biggest industry, and as Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, it’s a priority for me to help support our hardworking farmers in an effort to help the industry grow,” said Senator Ritchie
“This report details the hard work done by the Committee in 2013 and I would like to thank my colleagues, as well as the hardworking members of the agriculture industry whose input allowed us to take significant steps to foster further growth of this vital industry.”
Measure Seeks to Increase Local Foods in State Facilities
A bill sponsored by State Senator Patty Ritchie that seeks to use the tremendous buying power of state government to boost purchases of locally grown foods for use in state prisons, hospitals and other agencies has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Under Senate Bill 4061, officials will be directed to create a list of competitively priced food products available for institutional sale, giving state agencies easy access to farm fresh products. State officials will also be required to regularly update their local food purchasing lists and measure state agencies’ compliance with directives to expand purchases from local food sources.
“Eating local is a big trend right now—and it can mean big business for local farmers and food producers. This legislation builds upon that movement, seeking to use the purchasing power of state government to help farmers grow,” said Senator Ritchie, who chairs the Senate Agriculture Committee.
Nearly 60 farmers, agribusiness owners and others involved in the agriculture industry accessed information on a variety of funding and loan programs at today’s Agricultural Grant Opportunity Workshop, sponsored by State Senator Patty Ritchie and the Jefferson County Agricultural Development Council.
“From young people just starting their careers to people who have been farmers their entire lives, the group in attendance at today’s workshop was as diverse as the agriculture industry itself,” said Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Senator Patty Ritchie.
“I’m thrilled that along with the Jefferson County Agricultural Development Council, we were able to provide agribusiness owners with vital information they need to expand their businesses, create jobs and benefit the region’s economy as a result of their efforts.”