Hurricane Irene Farm Relief Action

September 5, 2011

As many news outlets have reported, Tropical Storm Irene has had a major impact on New York State farms and dairies. Many agricultural businesses have suffered damage in the form of flooded fields, power outages, and broken infrastructure, all of these leading to failed crops, stunted production, and a very difficult season ahead for many regional farmers. Although NYS Governor Andrew Cuomo has created a $15 million Agriculture and Community recovery fund to aid farms damaged by the storm, this will only go so far in covering the estimated $45 million in farm damages. These estimates however, may not account for crop and income losses for many upstate farmers. The Food and Drug Administration has released a notice prohibiting the sale of any produce for human consumption that has been exposed to flood waters.

Since government support alone may not be enough, we urge New Yorkers who have come to know and appreciate the Hudson Valley and other local farmers through contacts at farmers markets, CSAs, etc. - and who want to help - to do so through various channels being set up for donations, fundraising events, and action assistance opportunities - or by contacting affected farms directly.
Here is a list of resources with information on what you can do to help:
Greenmarket's Hurricane Irene Relief Fund - GrowNYC has set up a donation page to help farmers.
Just Food - Collecting donations to aid CSA farmers in their rebuilding efforts.
Hudson Valley Food Network Irene Farm Relief - Forums, news, updates and information on where help is needed as well as upcoming benefit events.
Pure Catskills: How to help Catskill Region Farmers - Information and resources on affected farms in the Catskills region.
Watershed Post Resources Page - A comprehensive list of Hurricane Irene Catskills recovery resources and info.