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Four Hudson Valley agricultural entrepreneurs honored on Earth Day, April 22, 2012.

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY – On Earth Day, Sunday, April 22, Vassar College and Glynwood will present the 10th anniversary of Glynwood’s Harvest Awards that will honor four agricultural entrepreneurs in the Hudson Valley – Farm to Table Co-Packers, Hudson Valley Fresh, Northeast Livestock Processing Service Company (NELPSC), and Wild Hive Farm. Newly-elected New York State Assemblywoman Didi Barrett (103rd district) will offer brief remarks for the program that begins at 4:30pm in the Ely Hall’s AULA. Although free and open to the public, advance reservations are requested and may be made online here: localfoodpioneers.eventbrite.com.

“When the Harvest Awards program was created in 2003, a national scope for the program was appropriate, even necessary, to show the important work being done across the country. However, in 2012, one needn’t look far and wide to find inspiration and innovation in the regionalization of our food system,” says Judith LaBelle, President of Glynwood.  “It seemed appropriate to mark the 10th Anniversary of the Harvest Awards by highlighting the exemplary work being done right here in our own backyard.”

The four winners will participate in a panel on Sunday entitled “Local Food Pioneers: Cultivating the Future of Farming in the Hudson Valley,” to be moderated by Glynwood President Judith LaBelle. The winners will discuss their work, their challenges, and the models they’ve created to increase their communities’ access to locally produced foods.  Guests will have the opportunity to speak with the winners at a casual reception immediately following the event. 

In announcing the award, Glynwood noted that this “group of winners is collectively improving food-related infrastructure in the Hudson Valley, thereby making farming viable here. Their work exemplifies the agricultural diversity of this region – including grain, produce, meat, and dairy – and they are helping to raise the profile of the Hudson Valley as a farming region. Their entrepreneurial successes prove that the Hudson Valley is a leader in the regionalization of our food system. “

The Local Food Pioneers event is co-sponsored at Vassar College by The Office of the Dean of the Faculty and the Multidisciplinary Learning and Living Community.

About the 2012 Harvest Award Winners
  • Farm to Table Co-Packers enables small farmers to manufacture value-added products from their fruit and vegetable harvests at a state-of-the-art facility (www.farm2tablecopackers.com);
  •  Hudson Valley Fresh has developed a model for a dairy co-op that brings a sustainable livelihood to their member farmers (www.hudsonvalleyfresh.com);
  • NELPSC has created a networking system that connects livestock farmers to processing facilities and then helps them to sell their meat to retail and institutional markets (www.nelpsc.com);
  • and Wild Hive Farm, which has reshaped the future of grain farming in the Hudson Valley by reviving heirloom grain varietals and opening a milling facility in the region (www.wildhivefarm.com).
About Glynwood and the Glynwood Harvest Awards

Glynwood’s mission is to save farming by strengthening farm communities and regional food systems. The goal is for small- and mid-sized farmers to thrive, on the land and in the marketplace. Major Glynwood programs include Keep Farming™, the Apple Project: Saving Orchards with Cider, and the Glynwood Institute for Sustainable Food and Farming. To learn more about Glynwood and its programs, visit www.glynwood.org

A decade ago, Glynwood created the Harvest Awards to honor farmers, organizations, and businesses across the nation for innovation and leadership in support of sustainable agriculture and regional food systems.

Vassar College strives to make its events, performances, and facilities accessible to all. Individuals with disabilities requiring special accommodations must contact the Office of Campus Activities at least 48 hours in advance of an event, Mondays-Fridays, at (845) 437-5370. Without sufficient notice, appropriate space/and or assistance may not be available. For detailed information about accessibility to specific campus facilities, search for “campus accessibility information” on the Vassar homepage (www.vassar.edu).

Vassar College is located at 124 Raymond Avenue in Poughkeepsie, NY, and directions to the campus can be found at http://www.vassar.edu/directions.

Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential, liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Tuesday, April 17, 2012