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Initiatives Promoting New York Dairy Industry
New York Ag Connection - 06/13/2018

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball Tuesday announced new initiatives the State is launching to promote New York State'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.

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 support New 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."

Rick Osofsky, owner of Ronnybrook Dairy Farm, said, "As a small New York dairy producer and processor committed to supporting New York's family dairy farms, we welcome New York State's Grown & Certified program's promotional efforts in restoring milk's reputation as a near perfect food. The fact that those efforts will also provide a needed economic boost for our New York dairy farms is a real bonus."

Through the month of June, the State is also partnering with New York dairy producers for farm tours and various retail outlets, including a number of New York State's Welcome Centers, to celebrate New York's dairy producers and processors with tastings of New York dairy products, including milk, cheese, sour cream, yogurt and ice cream. Tomorrow, the Department, along with New York Future Farmers of America and 4-H students and other guests, will tour Ronnybrook Dairy Farms' operation, allowing for an up-close look at how the dairy operation is run, the animals are cared for, and how Ronnybrook's dairy products are processed. The tour will take place at 11 a.m. A tasting of Ronnybrook's products will follow.

A list of New York dairy tastings taking place around the Stateinclude:

- Taste NY Market at Todd Hill - Various Local Dairy Products, June 13-25. Taconic State Parkway, Lagrangeville. Wednesdays, - HV Fresh Sour Cream. June 14 - The Amazing Real Live Food Camembert. June 18 and 28 - Cooperstown Cheese Company Cheddar. June 21 - Hoof Print Farm Chevre. June 25 - Ronnybrook Salted Butter

- Long Island Welcome Center - Hudson Valley Fresh Products, June 15, noon-4 p.m. 5100 Long Island Expressway, Dix Hills

- Southern Tier Welcome Center - Various Local Dairy Products, June 15-17. 2 Route 81 North, Kirkwood. Products being sampled include: Trinity Valley Cheese Curds and Chocolate Milk

- Front Street Taste NY Store - Various Local Dairy Products, June 15-17. 840 Front St., Binghamton. Products being sampled include: Victory Garden Goat's Milk Gelato and Engelbert Farms MooVache

- ShopRite -- King Brothers' Dairy Products, June 16, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Rensselaer

- ShopRite -- Ronnybrook Dairy Farm Products, June 16-30. June 16, 10 a.m. - Poughkeepsie. June 17, 2 p.m.- Monroe. June 22, noon, Hudson. June 23, 10 a.m., Monticello. June 29, 11 a.m., New Rochelle. June 30, 3 p.m., Carmel.

- Finger Lakes Welcome Center -- Various Local Dairy Products, June 16-17, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Lakefront Park, Geneva. June 16 - Muranda Cheese, Geneva Gelato, and Udderly Simple (Lotions, Soaps made w/goat milk). June 17 - Lively Run Dairy Farm and Creamery. Father's Day Floats (Cayuga Lake Creamery vanilla ice cream with a choice of Saranac Soda: Root Beer, Orange Cream, Black Cherry Cream) will sell for $1 each.

- Mohawk Valley Welcome Center - Various Local Dairy Products, June 21-28, Westbound at milepost 187, between exit 28 in Fultonville and exit 29 in Canajoharie. June 21 - Palatine cheese. June 28 - Dygert whole white and chocolate milk.

- Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum - Hudson Valley Fresh Products, June 30, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., 4079 Albany Post Road, Hyde Park.

In addition to the tastings and tours, Taste NY markets in the Southern Tier Welcome Center, Finger Lakes Welcome Center, Long Island Welcome Center, Mohawk Valley Welcome Center and the Taste NY Market at Todd Hill will be celebrating Dairy Month and showcasing New York's local dairy producers with special promotional signage and displays.

Lachele Coninx-Wiley, Market Manager, Taste NY at Todd Hill, "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!"

Earlier this month, the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets kicked off Dairy Month with Dairy Education Days to help New York's school children understand where their milk and dairy products come from and instill in them an early appreciation of the benefits of consuming New York products and of New York farmers who provide these nutritious products.

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