The NY Food Hub Collaborative

Cheryl Bilinski, Local Food Systems Specialist, Farm to School Lead
Harvest New York

November 3, 2022

Cornell Cooperative Extension has received a USDA Regional Food Systems Partnership Planning and Development grant for the NY Food Hub Collaborative. This is a 2-year project.


The NY Food Hub Collaborative brings together 29 local food system stakeholders representing 21 organizations to realize the long-term goal of improving the economic viability of mid-tier value chain partners targeting local markets by improving efficiencies, maximizing profits, and increasing demand for NY food products. Three objectives guide the project team toward that goal:

1. Establish a Collaborative of interdependent food hubs designed to work collaboratively to efficiently, affordably, and effectively market NY food products to institutional markets.

2. Identify the potential for small, mid-size, and socially disadvantaged producers to be competitive in state agency and institutional contracts.

3. Develop strategic business relationships between mid-tier value chain partners including food hubs, producers, processors, distributors, and markets that emphasize organizational interdependence, trust, and transparency and equitably distribute responsibilities and rewards.

Objectives will be met through strategic planning amongst Collaborative partners, virtual field trips to learn best practices from national partners, business-to-business development opportunities, producer and market partner training, and a series of outputs. Outputs include an interactive local food system asset map, a procurement guide on selling NY food products to various institutional markets, an analysis of existing procurement policies across institutions and recommendations for improvement, market analyses of key institutional market partners, a NY Collaborative product guide, and an implementation plan that provides a framework to operationalize the NY Food Hub Collaborative.

Project Partners:

  • Farm Fare
  • Syracuse University
  • Upstate Growers & Packers
  • Eden Valley Growers
  • Capital Roots
  • Farm Fresh First
  • 607CSA
  • Hub on the Hill
  • Headwater Food Hub
  • Grow NYC
  • East End Food Institute
  • Syracuse Onondaga Food Systems Alliance
  • Hudson Valley Agribusiness Development Corp.
  • Center for Agriculture Development and Entrepreneurship
  • NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets
  • Buffalo City School District
  • Syracuse City School District
  • NYC Citywide Administrative Services
  • Cornell Cooperative Extension Harvest NY
  • Cornell Cooperative Extension Broome, Oneida, Essex, and Saratoga Counties


Additional project partners will be identified as the project takes root. If you're interested in learning more or getting involved, please reach out to Project Director, Cheryl Bilinski, cbt32@cornell.edu





Upcoming Events

Urban Berry Project: Growing Strawberries 101

May 29, 2024
5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Upper Manhattan, NY

Join Makela Elvy, Anya Osatuke, and Dan Olmstead from Cornell University, along with the NYRP Urban Ag team, for a deep dive into everything strawberry! For beginning gardeners and advanced growers alike, this hands-on workshop will include an introduction to some of the preferred NYC-loving varieties, as well as a chance to plant out a new bed of strawberries in the Riley-Levin Demonstration Garden. SPACE is LIMITED! Registration is required.

New York State Honeyberry Conference

June 29, 2024
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Mexico, NY

Join CCE Oswego and CCE Harvest NY for a state-wide conference on a new emerging fruit called Honeyberry, also known as Haskap (Lonicera caerulea). Honeyberries are a dark blue color, like blueberries, but with a distinct oval shape. The taste is most associated with raspberry and blueberry, while also containing its own distinctive flavor. The fruit can grow in USDA Plant Hardiness zones 1 to 8 and can survive up to 30 years or longer if properly managed. What makes the fruit unique is that it ripens from the middle of June through early July. This allows the fruit to sit comfortably between the strawberry and blueberry season. When fully mature plants can produce 6 to 10 lbs. of berries, which can be eaten as a fresh fruit or made into value-added products.

The conference will cover the history of the fruit, best growing practices, processing, value-added production, and marketing. Guest speakers will include growers and researchers from the US and Canada, including Dr. Bob Bors from the University of Saskatchewan. Attendees will also be able to network and attend an optional farm tour immediately after the conference. 

Announcements

Field Guide: Arthropod Pests of NYC Vegetables

Arthropod Pests of NYC Vegetables aims to help urban farmers and gardeners find, identify, and understand the most common and important insects and other arthropod pests found in New York City farms and gardens. Some of these pests are rarely mentioned in other guides but are common in NYC. The guide emphasizes scouting tips, including how to identify pests by the damage they leave behind, even when you can't find the insect itself.

This guide was created as a collaboration between Cornell Cooperative Extension's Harvest New York team and the New York State Integrated Pest Management Program.