PRESS RELEASE:  April 27, 2007
Contact:  NNYADP Co-Chairs Jon Greenwood, 315-386-3231; Joe Giroux, 518-563-7523
                NNYADP Project Coordinator R. David Smith, Cornell University, 607-255-7286

NYS Budget Provides $400,000 for NNY Agricultural Development

The New York State Legislature has appropriated $400,000 to the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program for projects to evaluate the opportunities to produce biofuels and enhance the production of dairy, maple, cold-hardy grapes, and field crops in Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties. The NYS Budget funding will also support projects to increase agricultural environmental stewardship practices on NNY farms and conduct research on coping with the invasive species crop pest, the alfalfa snout beetle.

The Northern New York Development Program supports agricultural research, demonstrations and outreach in Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties with the goal of enhancing agricultural productivity and profitability while protecting the region’s soil, water and other environmental resources.
Leadership from Senator James Wright and Senator Elizabeth Little helped secure the NYS Budget funding. Senator Wright was recently honored by the New York State Association of County Agriculture Agents for his longstanding strong support of the agricultural industry in Northern New York, and particularly for his support of the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program.
"Agriculture is the biggest contributor to our rural economies," said Senator Wright. "I am pleased to secure funding for the Northern New York Ag Development Program, as this initiative looks at new and innovative ways to help strengthen the state's number one industry, which in turn, ensures the viability of Northern New York communities.”

“The Northern New York Agricultural Development Program provides a wealth of information to our local farmers,” said Senator Betty Little, a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee.  “As the agricultural industry continues to evolve, it is absolutely essential that our northern New York farmers have the best and most current information available so they can adapt, grow and succeed.  I am pleased to partner with Senator Jim Wright to secure funding in the state budget for this program.”

Funds from the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell, and Cornell Cooperative Extension also support the Northern New York Development Program.

The Program’s farmer committee reviews grant request proposals and selects projects that join the needs and interests of regional farmers with the resources, expertise and experience of Cornell University faculty and Cornell Cooperative Extension educators. Dairy farmers Jon Greenwood of Canton and Joseph Giroux of Plattsburgh co-chair the Program’s 33-farmer member board.

Committee member Kirby Selkirk, a Franklin County sheep and vegetable farmer, says, “The funding from the New York State Legislature to the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program is essential to the mission of strengthening the agricultural industry in both our traditional sectors of dairy, livestock, field crops and maple and the arena of new enterprises associated with producing small fruits, vegetables and biofuel crops in the region.”
“In partnership with the New York State Legislature, the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program is developing new ways to reduce costs, improve profits and help the region’s farmers gain a competitive edge by testing new ideas under our unique climate, soils and conditions. The results are practical information that can be applied on farms across Northern New York,” says committee member and beef producer Don Holman of Jefferson County.
Research is conducted on Northern New York farms and at the region’s agricultural research farms in Canton – the Cornell Cooperative Extension Learning Farm and Education Center, Chazy – the William H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute, Lake Placid – Cornell’s Uihlein Forest, and Willsboro - the Cornell E.V. Baker Research Farm.

The Northern New York Agricultural Development Program projects for 2007 include:
Agricultural Environmental Management
•  Whole Farm Nutrient Balance for NNY Dairy Farms
•  Precise Nitrogen Management for Corn
•  Nitrogen Needs For Corn After Grass-Legume Sod
•  Phosphorus Losses from Tile Drains
•  Expanding Soil Health Assessment in NNY

Biofuels/Grass-Based Agriculture         
•  Evaluating Warm Season Grasses for Biofuel Production in NNY

Dairy Herd Management
•  How Dairy Cow Footbath Treatments Affect Manure Storage Ecology and Crops
•  What are the Factors Affecting Milk Component Production and Profits in NNY
    Dairy Herds
•  Identifying the Transmission and Control Points for Klebsiella Mastitis in Dairy Cows

            Field Crop Production and Improvement
•  Corn Silage Hybrid Trials in Northern New York
•  Corn Grain Hybrid Testing Program for Northern NY
•  Cereal Variety Trials for Grain and Straw
•  New Cropping Options for Organic Grain in NNY
•  NNY Variety Trials for Forage and Food-Grade Soybeans

Fruit Production
•  Cold Hardy Wine Grape Cultivar Trial

Integrated Pest Management: Alfalfa Snout Beetle (ASB)
•  Biological Control with Nematodes
•  Breeding ASB-Resistant Alfalfa Varieties

Maple Production
•  Improving the Growth of Sugar Maples in NNY
Dr. R. David Smith with Cornell’s Department of Animal Science serves as the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program coordinator. For more information on the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program’s current research, project results, grants and history go online to www.nnyagdev.org or call 607-255-7286. # # #