ALBANY — State Agriculture Commissioner Richard Ball encouraged New Yorkers to continue to support the state’s farms and agricultural businesses. While the State works to mitigate the impact of COVID-19, Ball reminds consumers that food producing farms, farmers’ markets, food and beverage manufacturers, grocery stores, and retail food stores have been designated as essential to the food supply chain and continue to work to produce, process, transport, stock, and sell healthy, local New York food and beverages.

Many farmers markets are open across New York, using guidance from the state, and a number of farms and food and beverage producers are also offering their products on the farm for direct purchase or through their website for delivery.

For additional information, visit the NYS Grown & Certified page, a local farmers’ market website, or go directly to the producer’s website. New Yorkers can look for plant code 36 on dairy products in stores, meaning the product has been made in New York.

The commissioner also announced an additional opportunity to support New York farms and food producers through ShopTasteNY.com, an online shopping portal that allows for consumers to have New York-produced products delivered right to their door.

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “New York’s hardworking farmers and producers and the entire food industry are working around the clock keep us well-stocked and to ensure healthy, local food for our families. Because of their efforts, consumers should know that there is plenty of food being made and brought to grocery stores and farmers’ markets. We are grateful for the dedication of our agricultural community, and want to remind our consumers that now, more than ever, they need your support. I’m so pleased that Shop Taste NY can also be a useful tool at this time to bring New Yorkers closer to their favorite New York products. We encourage you, while you are shopping for your essentials, to keep New York in mind and to also extend thanks to the industry — from our farmers to grocery store workers.”

Through ShopTasteNY.com, a diverse selection of foods, beverages and gifts from each region of New York state that are available in the state’s Welcome Centers, are now also available on the new mobile-responsive online store.

The new website was launched to support the state’s farmers, producers, and small food and beverage businesses, and to increase sales and drive revenues to local communities. It also allows farmers to connect with new consumers in the marketplace.

Shop Taste NY is operated by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Sullivan County on behalf of Taste NY and the Department of Agriculture and Markets. The site offers a variety of products from across New York, from honey and jams to goat milk soaps, reflecting each region’s offerings. Currently, nearly 100 farms and food and beverage businesses are showcased on the site. Participating partners and products are featured on a rotating basis to ensure the diversity of the product line and regional representation.

Shipping is free for orders over $50 in the United States and customers can use the coupon code “NYLovesYou” to get 10% off their orders for a limited time.

A full list of current companies with products available by region can be found at ShopTasteNY.com. For more information or to place an order, visit https://shoptasteny.com/ or email info@shoptasteny.com.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that there is no evidence of food, food containers, or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. Consumers should continue to practice social distancing at grocery stores and farmers’ markets and follow proper hand-washing guidelines.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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