As the summer winds down, local farms have started to harvest their fall crops, making now a great time to visit a local farmers market. Central New York is home to a vibrant farming community and buying directly from them is a great way to support local economies and access fresh, healthy foods. Since the food at farmers markets is often harvested the day it’s sold, it’s some of the freshest produce you can find. Farmers markets also serve as community hubs, bringing people together to eat, laugh and enjoy entertainment as a community.
Local farmers and artisans are part of what makes the Central New York economy so vibrant and that’s why I’m committed to helping support New York agriculture. Earlier this year, I passed a state budget that invests in the state’s agriculture and food industries, while also fostering agricultural stewardship. I helped secure significant funding for agriculture commodity support programs, including first-time funding for the Empire Sheep Producers. The budget also provided $1 million for the Farm Viability Institute, increased funding for the Cornell Cooperative Extension to a total of $4.4 million and allocated $18 million for Farmland Conservation programs and the successful Farmland for a New Generation program. Furthermore, I helped make sure the spending plan included a three-year extension on the farm workforce retention tax credit to help farmers with the rising cost of labor. We also invested $50 million in the Nourish NY program, which supports farmers who sell food to food banks to help bring healthy, locally grown foods to families in need.
The COVID-19 pandemic taught us that our current food and agricultural systems are vulnerable to disruptions. That’s why I co-sponsored a new law to gather expert advice, guidance and recommendations on the state’s food supply and related supply chain logistics in the wake of COVID-19 to help create a system better prepared for emergencies (Ch. 316 of 2020). I look forward to reviewing the report, which is due at the end of this year.
As chair of the Assembly Small Business Committee, I’ll always work to support our hardworking farmers and strengthen the state’s food supply chain, and why I encourage everyone to visit their local farmers market. Our communities are home to a vibrant farming community and buying directly from farmers markets is a great way to show your support as well as boost the local economy. I hope to see you there!
Local Farmers Markets:
- Bayberry Market:Bayberry Plaza Parking Lot, Route 57 at Blackberry Road, Clay, 8AM to 4PM Wednesdays through October; 652-1463
- Cicero Farmers Market:Burdick’s Drive’s Village Parking Lot, 5885 E. Circle Drive, Cicero, 3PM to 7PM Tuesdays through October; 699-5233, ciceronewyork.net
- Manlius Farmers Market:Parking Lot behind Sno-Top ice-cream stand, off Fayette Street (Route 92) near Village Centre, 10AM to 7PM Wednesdays and 10AM to 4PM Sundaysthrough October; 682-7887, manliusvillage.org
- Central New York Regional Market:2100 Park St., Syracuse, 7AM to 2PM Thursdays (thru the end of October); 7AM to 2PM Saturdays (year-round); Flea Market 7AM to 2PM Sundays; 422-8647, cnyrma.com
If you have questions or concerns about this or any other community issue, please contact my office at 315-452-1115 or StirpeA@nyassembly.gov.