Third Annual New York Small Farms Summit at 4 Sites

NEWS FROM THE SMALL FARMS PROGRAM AT CORNELL TOPIC: Shape Our Future at the 3rd NY Small Farms Summit DATE: For immediate release, February 22, 2010 CONTACT: Violet Stone, 607-255-9227 or vws7@cornell.edu ONLINE NEWSROOM: www.smallfarms.cornell.edu/pages/news/ The Cornell Small Farms Program and Cornell Cooperative Extension invite you to join us for the 3rd NYS Small Farms Summit on Thursday, March 4th, from 9:30am - 3pm.  We will be gathering at 4 locations around NYS:  Voorheesville (Albany County), Canton (St Lawrence County),  East Aurora (Erie County), and Ithaca, NY (Tompkins County).  A video connection will allow us to communicate across the state while minimizing travel times and fuel use and allow you to get to know other local small farmers and small farm supporters.

What is the Summit About? The Summit is a VERY interactive meeting for farmers, educators, farm agency and anyone else concerned or invested in a vibrant and thriving small farm sector in New York.  At a previous meeting in 2006, participants identified the most promising opportunities and critical barriers affecting small farmers. In response, the Cornell Small Farms Program launched 5 Statewide Work Teams/Initiatives in the areas of: Local Market Access; Livestock Processing Issues; Expanded Use of Grasslands; Farm Energy Issues and Beginning Farmer Support.  These work teams conducted extensive research and hosted workshops, produced handbooks, and organized meetings with policy makers to prepare specific recommendations necessary to advance progress in these areas. Why Should I Attend? Your opinions and creative thinking are needed to help us shape future efforts supporting NY Small Farms.  At the upcoming NY Small Farm Summit, you, along with other farmers, agency representatives and farming advocates will prioritize what needs to happen in the next two years to enhance the viability of NY small farms.  These priorities will have both local and statewide impacts on research, extension and policy efforts.   The Cornell Small Farms Program will provide funding to support selected activities and help other groups secure funding to execute the plan. Your feedback "from the field" is very important in determining how investments are made in the immediate future.   Come out and help shape your future. The Summit is free to attend and lunch will be provided.  For more information or to register, contact your regional host site. Eastern NY (Albany County): Tom Gallagher tjg3@cornell.edu or 518-765-3500 Northern NY (St Lawrence County): Bernadette Logozar bel7@cornell.edu 518-483-7403 Western NY (Erie County): Lynn Bliven: lao3@cornell.edu or 585-268-7644 Central NY (Ithaca): Violet Stone vws7@cornell.edu or 607-255-9227

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