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Old 02-06-2007, 12:39 PM
 
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Default where in upstate ny for family farm

Hi,
We are a small family farm in Illinois(lived here my entire life and we ready for a change) We raise grass-fed beef, pastured poultry,eggs,veggies and goat milk. We use all organic processes and feed. We are looking at upstate NY as area of interest. My primary question is which area do you think this type of operation will succeed in? We are looking at Rochester, Syracuse,Ithaca and all areas in between. I really like the look of Ithaca(I like college towns i.e. UofI) but I have read about a lot of economic depression in the southern tier. Any thoughts out there would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
T
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Old 02-06-2007, 12:55 PM
 
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We are in the Southern tier and we are in COW country. Gosh you sound just like the few remaining family farms in our town. Don't discount the Southern Tier-though I know nothing about your industry and how you go about it.
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Old 02-06-2007, 01:23 PM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
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There are a lot of defunct farms along Rt 3 between Sandy Pond and Watertown. Not sure why. Along the southern shore of the lake in western NY are primarily apple orchards. Here in Oswego county we have muck land (black humus) for growing onions. -Watch out for rocks in some locations. Maple sugaring is popular. It's hillier here than in Illinois.

South of the state thruway, Rt 90, there appears to be more large working dairy farms. Adjacent to the Finger Lakes you'll find lots of wineries. Between Syracuse and Ithaca might be a good spot, around Cortland. Syracuse has a large regional farm market near the transportation center.

Cornell University has an Ag school with a lot of outreach and would be a good source of information for you. The new gov is going to be pushing for more buying of NYS farm products in NYC. Some already do now participate in the Hunter's Point market in the Bronx and there's more Manhattan restaurants that would be interested in your natural products than you can number.

Last edited by Sgoldie; 02-06-2007 at 01:55 PM..
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Old 02-06-2007, 04:17 PM
 
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check out dansville ny --southern tier--beautiful country
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Old 02-06-2007, 08:51 PM
 
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Upstate NY is the second largest producer of dairy products after Wisconsin I believe. The southern tier is rather economicaly depressed....the excepetion however, is Ithaca, a thriving college town. There are many whineries and higher-end farms in the beautiful contryside of the fingerlakes just southeast of Rochester as well.
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Old 02-06-2007, 09:05 PM
 
Location: NY
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There are many, many farms up for sale in parts of Delaware County, my guess is that they're all dairy (or formerly were). I can only speculate on it, but I think in many cases it just is no longer financially possible to maintain a small farm following 'modern traditional' (green-revolution, high input) methods. At the same time, I think there is a growing opportunity for those willing to go 'beyond organic,' as it sounds like you already do.
I imagine Ithaca (a really unique city) has some demand for the kinds of products you produce, but you may want to look a bit closer to NYC and possibly tap into the NYC greenmarkets/restaurants. Ithaca is about 4 hours to the city, and I know there are vendors in the markets that travel that kind of distance- worth it if you are selling a high $ to weight/volume item like meats, probably not so worth if for the veggies. I think you'll find that for most of upstate NY there is limited local demand (though I really hope it might be growing), but there is a substantial and definitely growing demand in NYC.
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Old 02-06-2007, 09:07 PM
 
Location: NY
408 posts, read 1,304,441 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i'minformed View Post
Upstate NY is the second largest producer of dairy products after Wisconsin I believe. The southern tier is rather economicaly depressed....the excepetion however, is Ithaca, a thriving college town. There are many whineries and higher-end farms in the beautiful contryside of the fingerlakes just southeast of Rochester as well.
I don't know if it was a purposeful 'slip' or just an honest mistake, but I sure got a laugh out of 'whineries!' I do think the ones on long island are much more 'whiny.'
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Old 02-07-2007, 07:24 AM
 
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Honey, I agree with the proximity to NYC comment. Husband and I always talk about that as we are trying to think of alternatives for the farms here. Sadly, the current farmers are pretty set in their ways, and to convert to a different method or product is something they crinkle their nose at. But, to come in here "fresh" is the OPPORTUNITY. As far as livestook-this area is very well suited. Argri-well we are rocky-though there are many corn fields. I would guess to produce organic vegies and herbs (which is what I would do) would require serious soil prep and amendment OR simply "raised beds" on a large scale to prevent having to dig into the rock. There is one or two organic farms in the area already.

Aside from the NYC market, Delaware County can also tap into Mohonk, Albany, all the Ski areas, the few resorts, etc. It is all about marketing and producing the product that the places want.

We wish we had more knowledge and experience-we would love to do it. As that is not realistic-we would LOVE to see the farms in the area turn around and find a way to a successful future!
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Old 02-07-2007, 01:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by honeychrome View Post
I don't know if it was a purposeful 'slip' or just an honest mistake, but I sure got a laugh out of 'whineries!' I do think the ones on long island are much more 'whiny.'
HAHAHA.....that was just a typo....but pretty frunny nonetheless. Maybe it was my subconscience lashing out against Long Islanders?
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Old 02-07-2007, 05:24 PM
 
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Default upstate farmland

Schoharie County is 30 minutes from Albany and sees it's share of summertime tourists. A very scenic agricultural area. Still reasonably affordable with the benefit of feeding off of the capital region economy.
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