September 19, 2023

New York State Department of Agriculture Announces Statewide Urban Agriculture Study

The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets today announced that it is undertaking a statewide study of urban agriculture to better understand the industry and formulate policy recommendations to support it further. As part of the study, stakeholders are invited to attend a special working session on November 2 to share their ideas and experiences. The study is conducted in partnership with the Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) Urban Agriculture Task Team and builds on Governor Hochul’s Statewide Commitment to Advancing Opportunities for agriculture.

The study will help identify and illustrate the major forms of urban agriculture currently practiced in urban centers across the state, including but not limited to vertical farming, community gardens, and other types. of urban agriculture. The study will examine the impacts that urban agricultural practices and markets have on access to locally grown food; Job creation; educational opportunities; and the environment. It will conclude with recommendations for legislation and administrative programs to advance urban agriculture.

The Department and the CCE Task Team are seeking input for the study from New York urban agriculture advocates and practitioners. These groups must submit all reports, recommendations, investigations, studies or other documents they have prepared to [email protected] to be included in the study. Inclusiveness and representation are central to the study and as such, all advocates and practitioners are encouraged to submit their work.

In addition, stakeholders are invited to participate in a meeting on November 2 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. During the meeting, the CCE will present an overview of the project and share draft policy recommendations, followed by an open discussion and response period. To attend the event, which will be held in person at 55 Hanson Place, Brooklyn, New York or virtually via WebEx, please RSVP to [email protected].

This announcement builds on Governor Hochul’s 2022 State of the State Commitment to help make local food accessible to more residents, including those in food deserts and underserved communities, and to encourage more urban agriculture. As part of this, the Department administers the Urban Farms and Community Gardens Grant Program, authorized in this year’s state budget. The grant program funds projects to develop and improve urban farms, school gardens and community gardens.