|Economic development and farmland protection are key issues |
POUGHKEEPSIE, NY - January 7, 2005 - The public and press are invited to participate in a forum about new economic development and farmland protection trends being promoted for Hudson Valley agriculture. The conference Agriculture in the Hudson Valley: Innovations will take place Thursday, Jan. 13, 2005, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Marist College in Poughkeepsie and is being sponsored by the Hudson Valley Agricultural Partnership (http://www.hvap.org/).
The mission of the Hudson Valley Agricultural Partnership (HVAP) is to initiate, support and promote efforts to protect farmland and strengthen agriculture for the good of the people of the Hudson Valley. The partnership was founded in 2000 when Scenic Hudson, the Open Space Institute and American Farmland Trust spearheaded the creation of the HVAP, which now brings together many partners in the non-profit sector as well as farmers, consumers and local business who share a commitment to the future of agriculture in the Hudson River Valley.
Participation in the HVAP conference is limited to the first 300 registrants. This is the second conference held by HVAP, and the first in 2003 at Vassar College sold out quickly.
- Nathan Rudgers, commissioner of New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets
- Tod Murphy, founder and owner of The Farmers Diner in Barre, Vt.
Attendees will have choices of three concurrent sessions:
Learn about the state of Hudson Valley agriculture
- Farm profitability
- Farmland protection
- Agricultural economic development
Agriculture in the Hudson Valley has evolved, even since the 2003 HVAP conference. Farmers continue to diversify their operations. Communities have adopted innovative approaches to farmland protection. A new distribution network is taking shape to move products from local farms to regional markets. New patterns in agricultural land use are emerging. There is a call to establish a financing entity devoted exclusively to agricultural economic development. For the first time a statistical picture of Hudson Valley agriculture is available. Have the challenges changed? Are innovative new solutions on the horizon? Is agriculture gaining or losing ground?
Registration is $25 for HVAP members and $35 for nonmembers. Pre-register or receive a conference brochure: e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or speak with Michael Turton, HVAP coordinator, at 845-528-3703.
Additional information about HVAP and the conference is available at http://www.hvap.net/.