Agriculture is one of biggest sectors of New York State’s economy. Yet people of color are largely left out of it.
Agriculture is one of biggest sectors of New York State’s economy. Yet people of color are largely left out of it.
Possessing a voracious appetite, the biggest concerns with the spotted lanternfly are their impacts on fruit trees, maples, and especially on vineyards.
“A good farmers market is like a weekly fair or festival. People are wanting that back, but it won’t be the same.”
“The plan is for us to continue to get dairy into the county through the food pantries and other food programs as long as the donations keep flowing.”
“That’s awful, awful, heart breaking when you watch your milk go down the drain when it’s a perfectly good, sellable product,”
The New York Farm Bureau has asked the state, in recent days, to ramp up testing for COVID-19 in rural areas of the state, particularly at farms.
DEP’s Climate Change Impact Assessment report focuses on livestock and watershed
“One of the questions about markets is, will we be able to provide enough…safety measures for people to feel comfortable in those spaces?”
The study found the wine and grape industry in New York directly creates 71,950 jobs, generating $2.79 billion in wages and $6.65 billion in direct economic impact.
There will be new features. Organizers envision sensory friendly days. They may program a health care worker or school employee day.
Pennsylvania’s Agriculture Secretary says several grant recipients were taken by surprise that they had to pay contracted workers prevailing wages.
“There were skeptics who didn’t think that Butter Gritty would ever come. But today is triumphant.”
Farm workers would be entitled to overtime pay, a guaranteed rest day each week, disability and Paid Family Leave coverage, unemployment benefits and the right to collective bargaining.
It’s going to be open for our people to apply and try their hand at it. Whether that means they’re putting it in the ground or they’re growing it indoors, we’ll definitely help facilitate that and we’ll see where it goes,”
The new bill will allow visas for year-round workers and it provides a path to legal status for current farm workers already in the U.S.
“You have a beautiful crop on, especially August-September. And then, all of a sudden, you’d come back a week later, and it would be dead.”
A stowaway from China, the spotted lanternfly, is eating its way across Pennsylvania, killing trees and grapevines. Scientists are considering importing the bug’s natural enemies from back home.
These cows don’t go out on pastures. That’s becoming more common, unless the farm is certified organic.
“It was really difficult because when you’re trying to run a business and you can’t have a bank account, it doesn’t really work.”
Residents and visitors to the Finger Lakes have the opportunity this weekend to visit working farms.
Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a farmworkers’ rights bill into law Wednesday that will for the first time give the workers benefits other employees get, including time off and overtime pay.
HARRISBURG, PA (WITF) – Alyssa Collins said she has been fielding around five phone calls every day from people with questions about hemp–and that’s not even counting the emails. Collins directs Penn State’s Southeast Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Lancaster County, where researchers are part of a multi-state, USDA-supported study into different varieties of hemp that can be used for food and fiber. Pennsylvania approved more than 300 permits to farm industrial hemp this growing season, after Congress loosened restrictions on the crop last year. Hemp was long banned because of its relationship to marijuana, but it does not have enough of the psychoactive compound THC to produce a high. So now, researchers like Collins are trying to clear up uncertainties about the crop.
Assemblyman Stephen Hawley, a Republican from Western New York, comes from a long line of farmers. He predicts the new requirements will be too onerous and that farms will close.
“If you look at the decline in milk consumption in our schools over the past nine years as a result of that misguided legislation, it actually tracks with the financial decline within the dairy industry.”
“To all the workers – this is a tool for you that you can use this to have a voice, to improve your working conditions, to fight against wage theft, bad housing, discrimination in the workplace. This is something you can use to change that.”
“China (has) used the American consumer and producer for many years by creating barriers to letting our products in their country, while they want to overwhelm us with their products.”
“If a beekeeper is able to take a honeybee swarm, they can care for them and manage them if they need it, instead of having these colonies kind of inhabit people’s homes.”
The New York Farm Bureau said farmers need more workers and it wants the President to consider an expansion of a visa program.
“One of the reasons why young people aren’t going into it (farming) is, they can’t make a dollar, can’t make a living.”
“We haven’t really prioritized them as the workforce and the backbone of the agricultural industry that they are.”
The spotted lanternfly eats away at the bark of trees. It’s a threat to some commercial crops that are big in New York like grapes and apples.
Crispin Hernandez used to work on a North Country dairy farm. He and others workers tried to organize and were fired. Now he works for a workers’ rights group.
“Farm workers are excluded from labor laws that protect all other workers. So, do we want to level the playing field and ensure that those protections are in place?”
A group of landowners and farmers are trying to stop some zoning changes designed to preserve open space in the Town of Ulysses. Some say agricultural needs haven’t been considered. The town disagrees.
Pennsylvania’s farming industry is changing. And the challenges—from falling dairy prices to young people leaving the industry to climate change—were front and center at a recent Agriculture Department budget hearing before a state House committee.
A New York State Senator from Olean is resigning her seat to take a job with Cornell University. State Senator Cathy Young has been a leading voice for Republicans and upstate communities.
Pennsylvania’s dairy industry woes are finding their way to a national stage. Milk sales are down. And in Pennsylvania and other major dairy states, the situation is getting difficult for farmers.
A backlog on the federal level is hurting local brewers. Sen. Chuck Schumer brought that message to Rochester’s Genesee Brewery on Monday. Schumer said brewers are heavily regulated and must file applications with the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau in order to release new flavors, update labels or change the size of a bottle.
Workers rights advocates are planning rallies across the state for a bill that would give farmworkers access to labor protections they don’t have.
Pennsylvania’s Agriculture Department is opening up its hemp program, pending approval from the federal government. The commonwealth has run a pilot program for industrial hemp over the past two years, but it was only open to entities growing the crop for research.
Industrial hemp used to be grown across the commonwealth and used for things like clothing, rope, and animal feed. Its popularity started to decline with the rise of cotton about 150 years ago, but the industry really suffered a setback when Congress outlawed it in the 1930s because of its similarities to marijuana.
A Canadian cannabis company could be bringing hundreds of jobs to the Southern Tier. The company is Canopy Growth; that’s the business that locally-based Constellation Brands has taken a major stake in.
Women are finding their own, nontraditional routes into the agriculture business.
New leadership positions in the state assembly were announced late last year and a pair of Southern Tier legislators will take charge of important committees.
A new federal proposal would change the way New York’s military installations get milk, and could hurt local dairy farmers. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) is trying to stop it.
President Donald Trump this week is expected to sign the 2018 Farm Bill that passed Congress last week. The bill includes some relief for struggling dairy farmers.
After harvest, New York apples can be stored for months in controlled atmosphere storage rooms where the temperature, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and humidity levels are adjusted to put them into hibernation.
In her new book, “Farming While Black: Soul Fire Farm’s Practical Guide to Liberation on the Land,” Leah Penniman describes her journey as a woman of color reclaiming space in the agricultural world while providing a comprehensive guide for others who want to follow her path.
Rapho Township, PA (WITF) — Farmers and researchers in 23 counties have been studying industrial hemp in trial crops this year. The former cash crop could see a resurgence if a U.S. Senate version of the federal Farm Bill is passed later this year.
“It’s way, way more important what we do with Mexico and China and what our general trade posture is,” he said. “Trade is important to us, but trade with Canada is not the biggest worrier.”
GENEVA, N.Y. (AP) New York grape breeders have produced a fruit that’s so big and flavorful they’ve named it after Mount Everest.
SYRACUSE, NY (WRVO) – 2018 was another record-breaking year for the New York State Fair near Syracuse. 1,279,010 people visited the Fair this year, smashing last year’s record by 10 percent.
SYRACUSE, NY (WRVO) – Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-New Hartford) hosted U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in Cortland to hear the concerns of dairy farmers in the region. Dairy farmers told Perdue about the dire situation the industry is facing.
STATE IMPACT PENNSYLVANIA – Last month, Pennsylvania saw the most recorded rainfall in a July. For many farmers in the state, the intense precipitation is part of a pattern of weather changes to which they hope to adapt.
HARRISBURG, PA (WITF) — This year has been tough for midstate dairy farmers. Deans Foods ended contracts with dozens of producers in March, while demand and prices for milk are at a low point. Now researchers are suggesting another way of generating income for dairy farmers.
Organophosphates drain off farms and make their way to the ocean, where they could be harming sea creatures like whales, dolphins and manatees
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – “Maybe the cows tip ‘em off when they’re milking them…” That’s how comedian Jerry Seinfeld explores the question of who determines the expiration dates on milk cartons in one of his better known routines.
SYRACUSE, NY (WRVO) – The Trump Administration’s plans to provide direct support to dairy farms as part of a $12 billion package to offset the impacts of its trade policies is welcome news to many in New York, which is the third-highest milk producing state in the country.
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – Farmers in the Rochester-Finger Lakes region are nervous about President Trump’s so-called trade wars.
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – A national farmers market association announced Thursday that it’s staving off the closure of the company that processes food stamp benefits at 40 percent of the farmers markets across the country, including hundreds in New York state.
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – The company behind the software that turns SNAP benefits into the tokens used at the Rochester Public Market has announced that it’s going out of business.
Trump is trying to protect dairy farmers in states like Wisconsin and New York, who have been hard-hit by low prices and overproduction.
PA tree farmer Alan Dambach’s tremor got so bad he couldn’t read his own signature. Then he tried a new procedure that uses sound waves to destroy specific brain cells.
STATE IMPACT PENNSYLVANIA – Clean energy advocates and environmental officials say bringing solar farms to Pennsylvania needs to happen if the state wants to significantly boost how much energy it gets from the sun.
On May 31, President Donald Trump announced that the 25 percent steel and 10 percent aluminum tariffs that had been temporarily exempt for the EU, Canada and Mexico would go into effect in June. Mexico answered with some counter-tariffs, including one on U.S. apples.
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – Some local beekeepers are concerned about a bill making its way through the New York Legislature. It would require all beekeepers both commercial and hobbyist, to register with the state.
SALEM TOWNSHIP, PA (WSKG) — For several years, a hog farm in Luzerne County has been under legal fire for emitting a stench that people say can make the surrounding area almost unlivable.
The USDA is offering an extension to dairy farmers who want to sign up for a special insurance program.
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – Current U.S. immigration policies pose an economic threat to New York’s struggling dairy industry, according to the director of a farmworker program at Cornell University.
ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – Senator Chuck Schumer visited a farm in Avon to call on US trade officials to fix trade between Canada and the US regarding dairy products during upcoming NAFTA negotiations.
SYRACUSE, NY (WRVO) – Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) said Monday that now is the time to get Canada to end a program hurting upstate’s dairy industry, as President Donald Trump’s administration renegotiates the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA.
HARRISBURG, PA (WITF) — A dairy farmer looking to sell his products in Pennsylvania is suing the federal Food and Drug Administration over what he says is a free speech violation.
HARRISBURG, PA (WVTF) — China is retaliating against tariffs imposed by the Trump Administration and Pennsylvania farmers could get caught in the crossfire.
HARRISBURG, PA (WSKG) — Republican state lawmakers wrapped up three weeks of annual budget hearings by tearing into Governor Tom Wolf’s administration for several hours straight.
ROCHESTER (WXXI) – The New York Farm Bureau, the state’s largest agricultural lobbying and trade organization has released its annual list of budget priorities.
HARRISBURG (WSKG) — The US Agriculture Department is laying out its preferences for a new farm bill–a massive plan that accounts for almost a half-trillion dollars in spending over five years.
HARRISBURG (WSKG) — State lawmakers on the Agriculture Committee took advantage of the Farm Show’s presence in Harrisburg this week, and convened in a back room of the complex to discuss their top priorities with Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. One of their primary focuses didn’t have to do with farming, exactly; rather, with making sure rural communities aren’t held back by bad internet access. In cities and suburbs, high speed broadband internet is typically a given. But Representative Pam Snyder said in her rural district in Pennsylvania’s southwestern corner, it’s often a luxury — and that can profoundly affect the people living there. “I have all or part of eight school districts.
HARRISBURG (WSKG) — The Pennsylvania Farm Show opens this weekend and after months of planning, its centerpiece has been revealed — a sculpture made from 1,200 pounds of butter. Like every year, dairy farmers, state officials, and dairy princess pageant winners stood shoulder-to-shoulder in the cavernous Farm Show complex in Harrisburg as it was unveiled. The 2018 version shows a farmer, milk processor, agronomist, consumer, and a cow, figures designed to represent the theme “Strength in Diversity.”
Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding said people often have a very specific image in mind when they think of Pennsylvania agriculture—say, a rural farm in the midstate. But he said this is meant to show that the industry’s impact is much bigger. “It’s the men and women, it’s the rural and urban, it’s the folks who have beehives on their rooftops in Philadelphia, as well as farms in Lancaster County,” Redding said.
There’s a lawsuit now in New York that could expand the rights of farm workers. Under state law, farm workers aren’t allowed to bargain collectively, but the state Constitution may say something different. The complaint The part of the New York State Constitution that matters is Article 1, Section 17. Here’s the relevant portion: Employees shall have the right to organize and to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing. Aadhithi Padmanabhan of the New York Civil Liberties Union called the text crystal clear.
In today’s vintage throwback Thursday photograph, a farmer gives his daughter a ride in a wheelbarrow while a group of cows look on. The photo was taken in Chenango County probably around the late 19th or early 20th century and represents an interesting snapshot of farm life during this time period. Tune in for the premiere of “Harvest,” WSKG’s new original documentary chronicling the history of agriculture in our region, on November 19th at 8PM to learn more about family farm life.
Photograph courtesy of the Chenango County Historical Society.