Rumors swirled that 1,200 people were expected at the Brooklyn Food Conference (BFC) on Saturday, May 2 at John Jay High School in Park Slope, Brooklyn. We were certainly surprised to find a projected 3,000 people in attendance and we even ran out of most of our materials! It was an honor to be invited to speak on the panel, "Our industrial meat complex: Hazardous to our health and our habitat" moderated by Kerry Trueman (co-founder of EatingLiberally.org) and to present testimony at the Public Hearing on Food Policy and Implementation with State and City Elected Officials. Animal Welfare Approved staffer Brigid Sweeney presented on behalf of independent pasture-based and high welfare farmers before State Senator Eric Adams, State Assembly member Jim Brennan, State Senator Velmanette Montgomery and City Council Member Leticia James. The public hearing was moderated by David Buckel, civil rights attorney and BFC volunteer organizer, who is determined to make Animal Welfare Approved's voice heard for New York's legislative agenda.
The Pride of New York Retail Promotion Grant program is working to help NY consumers identify food items from New York State. Their aim is to help increase sales for both NY farmers and retailers.
State Acting Agriculture Commissioner Darrel Aubertine says, “Consumer awareness and interest in buying local food has increased dramatically in recent years…This program will provide valuable assistance to retailers to help them source more local New York products as well as necessary resources to develop customized promotional materials that highlight local businesses. We are pleased to offer this financial opportunity that will support the New York State economy and benefit all sides of the equation, including retailers, farmers, food processors and consumers alike.”
Who is eligible?
Individual food stores, as well as grocery store chains in New York State. Meat, dairy and egg products are included in the list of eligible products.
Applicants must be selling products that have been produced on NY Farms and also processed in NY.
Each applicant is eligible for up to a total of $5,000 (no more than $350 per individual store).
$3,500 to highlight fresh produce, and $1,500 to promote processed and value-added products made in New York. The funding can be used to supplement existing consumer-focused programs or to initiate new “buy local” retail efforts.
There is a total of $43,172 available for this one-time program.
Grants will be awarded on a first come, first served basis.
Funding must be matched by the retailer and no more than $350 per individual store will be awarded (based on this calculation, in order to be eligible for the full $5,000, a retailer would need to have 14 stores).
Promotional and Marketing Assistance
The NY State Department of Agriculture & Markets will also provide to eligible applicants for promotional and marketing assistance in:
- developing or expanding “buy local” promotions that can be customized and consumer-oriented and that range from point-of-sale materials and promotional items to advertising.
- expanding their local purchases by showcasing other specialty crop based processed products available in New York State throughout the year.
To download the application, please visit the New York State Department of Agriculture & Markets website.
For additional information contact Dtrae Carter, Retail Promotion Specialist, at 518-457-2774 or firstname.lastname@example.org