February 14, 2013

State Senator Patty Ritchie hosted the first meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture Tuesday, and featured a presentation by representatives of the New York Farm Viability Institute, which sponsors agricultural research and other programs to help bolster farmers’ bottom lines.

“It’s my goal, and the goal of the Senate Agriculture Committee, to help New York farmers grow, and help build New York’s economy and create jobs by strengthening our Number One industry,” Senator Ritchie said.

“That’s the goal of organizations like the Farm Viability Institute, too, and today’s presentation is designed to help make New Yorkers aware of the work the group is already doing to strengthen farmers’ bottom line, reduce costs, increase productivity on the farm, and ensure the success of agriculture in New York State.”

The meeting featured a presentation by NYFVI Managing Director David Grusenmeyer and Vice Chair Steve Griffen, who operates Saratoga Sod Farm in Stillwater, Saratoga County. The pair highlighted some of the group’s research efforts impacting dairy farmers, maple producers and berry growers, among others.

They also distributed copies of the Farm Viability Institute’s Annual Report, which included a map of dozens of past and ongoing research projects involving farmers in Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence Counties, and throughout New York State.

As Chair of the Agriculture Committee, Senator Ritchie has championed the group’s work, and fought to restore more than $1.6 million in budget cuts over the past two years to allow NYFVI to continue its important work.

“More and more, leaders of our state are embracing agriculture as a critical part of New York’s economic resurgence, and Farm Viability Institute plays an important role in helping us achieve success.

Click the video to watch the Farm Viability Institute presentation.

Click here for a copy of the Farm Viability Institute’s Annual Report.

Click here to view the map of projects sponsored by the Farm Viability Institute.