ALBANY, N.Y.–State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball today announced new initiatives the State is launching to promote New YorkState’s dairy industry during Dairy Month. The New York State Grown & Certified Program continues to grow its dairy sector, most recently welcoming Chobani, Inc., Organic Valley, Ronnybrook Farm, Eat Me Ice Cream, and Argyle Cheese to the program.
The Grown & Certified program markets New York’s agricultural producers and growers who adhere to food safety and environmental sustainability standards. With these new additions to the program, there are now 12 processors participating in the program, representing more than 1,800 dairy farms. The State is supporting these Grown & Certified businesses with funding for on-product labeling that will provide them more visibility and help consumers more easily identify their products.
Commissioner Ball said, “Dairy is a critical economic sector for New York State, that not only provides jobs and investment in our regions, but also provides for the health and well-being of our communities. Now, more than ever, we need to continue to supportNew York’s farmers and our processing facilities and ensure that consumers understand the importance of buying local dairy products. We encourage everyone to get out and visit a local farm, look for Plant Code 36 on their dairy products in the grocery store, and try any number of the delicious New York State-made dairy products that are out there on the market.”
Michael Gonda, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs at Chobani, said, “As a food company that started small and grew with our community in Central New York, local is an important word to us. The New York State Grown & Certified Program is a powerful way to communicate this shared value with our fans and to continue to share the story of the local farms and people behind our food.”
Lachele Coninx-Wiley, Market Manager, Taste NY at Todd Hill, said, “We proudly offer delicious and diverse New York state dairy products, and they continue to be some of our most popular items; award winning cheeses, including raw milk Camembert, silky rich sour cream, chocolate milk and drinkable yogurt are among our best sellers. The Taste NY Market at Todd Hill is a convenient place to find these great products and support the hardworking dairy farms year-round.”
Finger Lakes Welcome Center Taste NY Market General Manager Heather Tuttle, said, “National Dairy Month is a great way to kick-off summer by enjoying nutrient-rich dairy foods! Our Taste NY Market offers an array of delicious New York State local dairy products, including; yogurts, cheeses, chocolate and strawberry milk, gelato, ice cream and novelty items. We even carry lotions and soaps made by a local goat farm. In addition to the Market, the Center offers a “Tasting Bar” where we’ll be showcasing local dairy vendors throughout the month of June, this is a great opportunity for vendors to offer free samples of their products to the many visitors passing through the Finger Lakes Welcome Center”.
Mohawk Valley Welcome Center Market Manger Erin Abele, Director of Employment Services & Industrial Operations for Liberty ARC, said, “June is Dairy month so the Mohawk Valley Welcome Center at Lock 13 invites all to come in and share a Taste of New York. We are pleased to highlight two of Montgomery County’s local dairy producers, Palatine Cheese and Dygert Farms Creamery, and hope visitors will find a new favorite local product to enjoy.”
Southern Tier Welcome Center Taste NY Market Manager Nicholas Hayes, said, “Savory pizza. Creamy milkshakes. Tempting cheese plates. Dairy is a part of all the things you love to eat! Visit Taste NY in the Southern Tier and sample some of the finest products New York’s dairy industry has to offer!”
–Jola Szubielski, N.Y. State Agriculture