FFA State Officers at NY Agriculture Hearing - Albany

Ritchie Hosts 'Growing New York Agriculture' Hearing in Albany - December 12, 2017

Testimony from Industry Leaders Will Help Shape Effort to Improve New York State Agriculture

Agriculture leaders shared insights into how New York State can support the growth of its leading industry at a public hearing hosted Tuesday by New York State Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Senator Patty Ritchie.

During the hearing, Senator Ritchie—as well as Senate Agriculture Committee Member Senator Patrick Gallivan—heard testimony from key stakeholders from nearly two dozen agricultural organizations and businesses. The Senate Agriculture Committee will use the information discussed Tuesday to advocate for new policies, initiatives and funding that will directly help growers and producers across the Empire State.

“Agriculture is New York State’s leading industry, and if we want it to remain as such, we need to make sure we are tapping into the insights and ideas that those on the front line have for helping it to grow,” said Senator Ritchie. “I would like to thank those who participated in this hearing and look forward to putting the ideas they shared for supporting farmers and strengthening agriculture into motion.”

“As we prepare for a new Legislative session, it’s important that we hear from farmers and others in the agriculture industry about the challenges they face and how the state can best support them,” Senator Gallivan said. “New York’s economy depends on a strong agricultural industry and I appreciate the input we received from those who testified at Tuesday’s hearing.”

At the hearing, those who delivered testimony—including representatives of key groups such as the New York Farm Bureau, Cornell College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, FFA, NY Maple Producers, Cornell Center for Dairy Excellence, the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County and the New York Farm Viability Institute, among others—shared details on challenges faced by those in the industry and ideas for supporting its future success. Several of the challenges discussed were low milk prices, adapting to changing weather and attracting new people to the profession, among others.

In addition, those testifying also thanked the Senate Agriculture Committee for its efforts in recent years to restore and increase funding for vitally important programs. In 2017, for the third straight year, the new state budget included record funding for agriculture.

Included in the spending plan was $51 million—which included $10 million in restored cuts made in the Executive Budget proposal—that is helping to support dozens of programs farmers depend on, as well as to launch new initiatives designed to strengthen the connection between consumers and local foods. 


New FFA Scholarship from Farm Credit East

Could your students use some extra money to fund their growing SAE or future education?

Farm Credit East is proud to announce the release of its new FFA Scholarship! This scholarship is focused on providing students with a strong SAE the funds needed to expand or continue their SAE or education. The scholarship is open to all active high school FFA members with a current SAE. For further details please see the attached press release and FAQs, or visit our FFA Scholarship page at https://www.farmcrediteast.com/industry-support/ffa-scholarship .
To apply: https://www.farmcrediteast.com/industry-support/ffa-scholarship

If you have any questions please feel free to contact Ryan Willits (Ryan.Willits@farmcrediteast.com) or (860)741- 4380.

For Immediate Release
Date: November 6, 2017
Contact: Kristie Schmitt
Telephone: 800.562.2235
Email: Kristie.Schmitt@FarmCreditEast.com  

Farm Credit East Announces New Scholarship to Support Future Agriculture Leaders

ENFIELD, CONN. – Farm Credit East, the Northeast’s largest agricultural lending cooperative, recently announced a new scholarship for students involved in The National FFA Organization (Future Farmers of America). This scholarship will be awarded to four students with a strong Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) and who understand their project’s impact on their future career in an agriculturally related field.

Four $500 scholarships will be awarded. Funds can be used to support the student’s current SAE project or to enhance their knowledge of the agriculture, commercial fishing or forest products industries.

To apply, applicants must be active in their local FFA chapter and reside within the seven states Farm Credit East serves. Applicants will be evaluated on their Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE), including objectives, progress to date and project financials. Their community involvement and volunteer activities will also be looked at in the judging criteria.

Applications are due by December 31, 2017. To apply for a Farm Credit East FFA scholarship, please visit FarmCreditEast.com/FFAscholarship, or contact a Farm Credit East branch office.

Farm Credit East extends more than $6.3 billion in loans and has 21 local offices in its seven-state service area. In addition to loans and leases, the organization also offers a full range of agriculturally specific financial services for businesses related to farming, forest products and commercial fishing. Farm Credit East is governed by a 17-person board of directors. For more information, visit FarmCreditEast.com.

New York State Officers Hit the Road - Fall 2017

SO tour_2017.jpg

October 2-6, 2017 | This past week, the New York State Officers hit the road to tour agriculture programs and FFA chapters across the state. Members showed off their skills in Barnyard Olympics, and their chapter pride while giving tours of their agriculture classrooms, greenhouses, and gardens. State Officers facilitated workshops during several chapter visits, where students learned how to risk boldly, live the legacy and follow their path. Each workshop consisted of various games and activities that were used to help students grow as leaders, break out of their comfort zones, and become aware of opportunities in the FFA. The five day tour started with the farthest west FFA chapter in the state, Clymer FFA, and ended in the east, with the John Bowne FFA chapter in New York City.

The State Officers took the opportunity to tour Wards Natural Sciences and Wegmans, both supporters of the FFA, and were able to learn a little bit more about their companies. NY FFA is successful because of the support we receive from companies such as these and we want to continue to find ways that we can continue to work with each other. The State Officers also had the opportunity to visit the location of the 2018 State Convention, which will be held at the Blue Cross Arena, Radisson Hotel and the Convention Center in Rochester, NY!

Members and State Officers alike, look forward to State Officer tour because of all the opportunities that it offers. Paige Thorne from the Carthage FFA chapter looks forward to State Officer tour because,” I get to meet new people and see the State Officer Team all at once.” Traveling over 1,500 miles and meeting nearly 1,000 members always makes this experience great, expressed Megan Lamb, State Vice President! The diversity of the agriculture industry in New York is reflected in the diversity of each of the chapters we visited, Megan continued. The State Officer team would like to thank everyone for being such great hosts and we look forward to seeing you all at future events.

Respectfully Submitted by, Kimberly Doyle, NY FFA
State Reporter, 2017-2018