HUDSON VALLEY FARM HUB
With a commitment to sustainable agriculture, environmental renewal, and economic vitality in the Hudson Valley, the Local Economies Project of the New World Foundation is pleased to announce the the creation of a multi-faceted Farm Hub in New York’s Hudson Valley. The Farm Hub will serve as a regional center for farmer training, agricultural research and demonstration of innovative farm technologies. Gill Farms in Hurley, NY, will serve as the location for the Farm Hub. Gill Farms, in operation since 1937, is located on 1,255 acres of highly productive prime farmland in one of the most scenic and productive agricultural regions in the Hudson Valley. The land purchase was funded by the NoVo Foundation with the intention of holding it until such time as an independent nonprofit organization can be formed to carry the Farm Hub’s work forward. The Local Economies Project will manage the development and growth of the Farm Hub during this initial phase.
The mission of the Farm Hub is to:
- Provide training for new and existing farmers in sustainable agriculture and marketing
- Support research and demonstration of new technologies and practices that promote resiliency
- Assist farmers with secure and affordable access to land
- Assist farmers and entrepreneurs with access to capital to establish and grow their operations
- Serve as an educational resource for advances in local food and farming in the Hudson Valley
The farm property offers a unique opportunity to enhance the land with state-of-the-art resilient agriculture and farmland conservation practices. There will also be ample opportunity to demonstrate farm-based renewable energy opportunities like solar and wind and explore new opportunities to turn food and farm waste into compost.
The Local Economies Project has worked with a group of advisors and grantee partners over the last three years to identify barriers and opportunities for building a resilient food system. Collaborators include leading national institutions like the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, statewide groups like NOFA-NY and Cornell Small Farms Program, regional organizations like Hudson Valley Agribusiness Development Corporation, Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, Glynwood, Grow NYC/ New Farmers Development Project, and local partners like Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County, Rondout Valley Growers, Hawthorne Valley Farm and Roxbury Farm.
Master planning for the Farm Hub will continue through 2014 and will involve programming, land use, site planning, and environmental stewardship. The Local Economies Project is spearheading the planning process and working closely with a network of regional and local partner organizations to solicit input from a broad range of stakeholders and community leaders. The Farm Hub programs are slated to begin operations on-site by the spring of 2015.
Click here for Farm Hub News, Spring 2014. Click here for the Farm Hub Prospectus Summary. Click here for Farm Hub: Frequently Asked Questions. For more information, or to obtain a copy of the December 20th, 2013 press release, contact: Brooke Pickering-Cole, Manager of Community Relations, Local Economies Project, Brookepc@newwf.org.