The Food and Drug Administration is, for the first time, proposing new food safety rules for produce farmers across the country. The FDA asked for comments on the rules this year and thousands of upstate farmers responded. Many of them criticized the rules, saying they could spoil their livelihood. So the FDA announced last week they would re-draft some of the contentious rules.
Richard Ball runs Scoharie Farms on Route 30 outside of Albany. He walks over to a metal gate closing in one of his fields and yanks up the hood on his coat, blocking the wind.
Pennsylvania farmer David Morgan at a Meet the Farmer event in Binghamton.
Credit Matt Richmond/Innovation Trail
In New York’s central region, there are hundreds of farms selling meat and produce directly to the public, and a Binghamton group is working to connect restaurants with those farms. The downtown Binghamton restaurant Lost Dog Café recently held a "Meet the Farmer" event. Sixty people attended a catered dinner in the back of the busy restaurant.
The city of Watertown has built a new pavilion as part of its downtown revitalization project. It's meant to house outdoor activities, including the Saturday farmers market. The farmers market held an appreciation ceremony to thank the city on Saturday.
An in-store display at Wegman's in Liverpool showcases locally-grown produce.
As fast as veggies are popping up in the garden, local foods are showing up on grocery store shelves throughout northern New York.
A new food co-op recently opened in Clayton, in Jefferson County, that showcases locally-sourced vegetables and other products, but big grocery chains like Hannaford and Wegman's are getting in on the trend, too, adding more of the region's products to store shelves.