Assemblyman Magee Working to Bring Fresh Produce to Seniors

June 4, 2012

Continuing his efforts to promote products grown in New York State, Assemblyman Bill Magee (D-Nelson) announced he introduced legislation to establish a Farm-to-Senior program (A.10308). The bill would allow the Department of Agriculture and Markets and the state Office for the Aging to work together to coordinate efforts to promote and provide local produce to seniors.

“New York farms are among the best in the nation – and they’re right in our backyard,” Assemblyman Magee said. “This program would help bring farm products to seniors who aren’t able to make the trip to our local farmers markets, allowing them the same benefits the rest of us enjoy.”

In 2002, New York State successfully established the Farm-to-School program, bringing fresh, local goods to schools statewide. Assemblyman Magee’s bill would mirror the program and provide the same access to seniors, while expanding a potential new market for farmers. Additionally, the bill would establish a promotional event, known as “New York Golden Harvest: Seniors Week,” to further promote the program.

“This type of program was so successful in our schools that expanding it for senior living centers just makes sense,” Assemblyman Magee said. “Branching out beyond our usual markets will be good for farmers and good for our seniors.”

This bill joins Assemblyman Magee’s legislation introduced last month in the push to promote New York-made goods. Assemblyman Magee’s two earlier bills would expand the Pride of NY program by providing designation to restaurants for “Dine: Pride of New York” and to retailers and wholesalers for “Shop: Pride of New York.”

Assemblyman Bill Magee has long fought for measures to help promote agriculture, including helping pass an on-time, fee-free, farm-friendly budget, which included funding for all of the vital agriculture assistance programs.