In a big boost to a statewide program aimed at protecting farmland, the budget that passed last week in Albany has allocated more money than ever before to the initiative, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced. The 2015-16 state budget added $35 million more for the Farmland Protection Program, a number that, according to the American Farmland Trust, places New York in the top five among states capitals setting money aside for farmland protection.
Potted ornamental plants in one of the greenhouses at Jamesport Greenhouses on Herricks Lane. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
A Greek yogurt boom has brought herculean increases in sales to a couple of upstate counties in recent years, knocking Suffolk County out of its long-coveted spot as New York State’s No. 1 seller of agricultural products, according to newly released data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Between 2007 to 2012, the county fell to third in the state, according to the survey, which is conducted every five years. (more…)
Scenic corridors, fine wine and farm-fresh produce are enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. They provide the backdrop for and help define life on the North Fork — and are testaments to the area’s rich agricultural history. But beyond all the beauty and nostalgia, farming is a business. And it’s a tough and dirty business, one that’s under constant threat from forces both natural and man-made.
For 26 years, Joseph Gergela, executive director of the Long Island Farm Bureau, has worked to protect the farmer and, to the best of his ability, help the industry thrive. Last year, he decided to retire. Because of his lifelong passion, leadership and devotion to the North Fork’s farming community, Mr. Gergela is the recipient of The Suffolk Times’ first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award. (more…)
A jersey cow inside the new dairy barn at Ty Llwyd Farm in Riverhead. (Credit: Vera Chinese)
Ty Llwyd, the only farm on Long Island to sell raw, unpasteurized milk, is nearing completion on a new dairy barn that could allow the Riverhead operation to double its output.
The 7,200-square-foot barn, made of wood, concrete and metal, can house up to 30 cows and is expected to be completed in January, said dairy farmer Chris Wines, whose parents Liz and David own the Sound Avenue farm.