Farming in New York is flourishing, with farmers setting a sales record in 2013, taking in $5.68 billion in cash receipts. That’s more than $1 billion from just three years ago according to recently released data from the United States Department of Agriculture.
“The newly released USDA sales numbers for 2013 are proof of the value of agriculture to New York State, Dean Norton, New York Farm Bureau President said.
The USDA determined the data by the gross income from sales of crops, livestock and other products sold between 2011 and 2013.
Norton credited the boost in sales over the past few years in part to farmer innovation, world markets and a commitment from New York state. The passing of the Craft New York Act relaxed regulations for alcoholic-beverage producers. Since 2011, the state’s farm-based businesses producing wine, beer, spirits and cider using ingredients grown in New York increased by 100 percent, while the total number of manufacturers producing alcoholic beverages in New York increased by 105 percent since 2011.
The state’s Taste NY Program is also focusing on the state’s agriculture with a new marketing including highlighting state produced goods and with Taste NY stores. Other state initiatives are focusing on connecting the upstate agricultural sector with down state consumers.
“New York produces some of the best produce and agricultural products in the world and this administration has made it a priority to help promote this industry, cut red tape and lower costs to help it grow,” Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
According to a Cornell University study, every dollar spent in agricultural output, generates an additional $.43 for non-agricultural industries and every new job created within agriculture creates .80 non-agricultural jobs.
“This is money that goes right back into the rural communities supporting local jobs,” Norton said.
Long Island is the state’s top agricultural producer, with Suffolk County alone, generating an estimated $168 million in farm products.