State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball today announced that New York State Grown & Certified farms will be getting a promotional boost with the launch of a new marketing campaign that will be seen by consumers across the State. The campaign highlights New York’s diverse array of specialty crops and encourages consumers to “Look for the Label” and find New York State Grown & Certified products, such as fruits, vegetables, herbs, honey, maple, and more at retailers across the State.
Commissioner Ball said, “We have such a great story to tell about New York agriculture and this new marketing campaign allows us to tell that story to consumers across our state. I’m excited about the opportunity this brings for our NYS Grown & Certified farmers and producers, who work hard every day to feed our families, producing food in a way that looks out for the environment and pays close attention to safe food handling. I encourage everyone to ‘Look for the Label’ and support our farmers by buying Grown & Certified.”
The campaign—which was created by Paperkite, a marketing firm in Cooperstown—kicks off today, September 16, with digital media advertisements placed on all social media platforms, including on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, TikTok, Snapchat, Spotify, and YouTube. Radio advertisements and sponsorships will start September 18 and run through the end of the month. In addition, the traditional marketing campaign will include billboards that will be visible starting September 19 in Albany, Buffalo, Kingston, Rochester, Syracuse, and in New York City located at 1619 Broadway. The advertisements will be direct consumers to the Grown & Certified website at: certified.ny.gov/lookforthelabel.
The website provides consumers an easy way to find Grown & Certified products and highlights the impact of these products on the agricultural economy as well as the health and well-being of New Yorkers. The page also features three videos that feature New York State Grown & Certified farms—Shaul Farms, Agbotic/Good Healthy, and Tongore Brook Farms, who share why the Grown & Certified label is important to them and their customers.
John Gaus, Founder/CEO of Agbotics, said, “Because we are New Yorkers and growing food for New Yorkers, it’s increasingly in demand, with the movement of consumers, to want hyper local food. We have recently had retailers ask us to add the Grown & Certified certification to our labels because they are increasingly hearing from their own shoppers that they want local products.”
“As a farmer in New York State its really, really wonderful to be part of the NYS Grown & Certified program,” said Michael McDonough, owner of Tongore Brook Farms LLC. “As a member of the NYS Grown & Certified family, one of the things we’re most concerned about is getting the best – the best soil, the best seeds, the best practices to you and your family, delivering the most quality nutrition we can.”
The marketing campaign is being funded through the USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant program.
Launched in 2016, the New York State Grown & Certified program assures consumers that the food they are buying is local and produced to a higher standard by requiring participating producers to adopt food safety standards and enroll in an environmental management program. Since the program began, the NYS G&C program has grown and evolved to cover 20 agricultural commodities and processing industries. It has been supported with several marketing efforts since its launch, including on-product labels and promotional materials, such as a website, and video and sales materials, to encourage program participation among producers and to educate retail, wholesale and institutional buyers on the value of the program.