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American Farmland Trust Adds Staff To Expand Next Generation Farmers, Farm To Institution Programs In New York State

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y., Jan. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- American Farmland Trust (AFT) today announced the addition of two new staff to expand its capacity in New York State to help transition farms to the next generation and promote new markets for local agricultural products through its Farm To Institution New York State initiative, according to David Haight, New York State Director for AFT.

Tim Biello joins AFT as New York Field Representative working to facilitate the successful transition of farms to the next generation, coordinating farmland access and farm transfer training programs for farmers, landowners and professionals. Specifically, he will oversee the development of the Hudson Valley Farmlink Network and associated website.

"Tim is an outstanding addition to American Farmland Trust," said Haight. "He has real-world experience on farms and understands the challenges and opportunities facing farmers looking for farmland and ways to succeed in agriculture. His experience and skills will be critical for our growing programs to aid the successful transition to the next generation of New York's farmers."

Tim has worked on and managed farms in the Hudson Valley, Finger Lakes and North Country regions of New York, as well as conducted a search for farmland on which to launch a farm operation of his own.

He has also worked closely with Hudson Valley agricultural organizations, including Hawthorne Valley Farm and Phillies Bridge Farm Project and on field research, participatory research projects and agricultural education programs for the public.

Tim will be based out of AFT's New York State Office in Saratoga Springs and can be contacted by sending email to: tbiello@farmland.org.

Glenda Neff joins AFT as the Farm to Institution New York State (FINYS) initiative Coordinator and Senior Field Advisor.  FINYS is a partnership of agriculture, economic development and public health interests working to scale up local food economies by expanding the volume of food grown in New York that is served in institutions, such as colleges, hospitals and schools. 

"We are excited to have Glenda joining AFT to help lead the Farm to Institution New York State initiative," said Haight.  "Glenda brings extensive experience working with farmers, schools and institutions, food businesses and others that will be invaluable for this exciting new initiative."

Glenda began her work with farm and food projects in the late 1970s as an active member of the Syracuse Real Food Co-op and Northeast Organic Farmers Association of New York, expanding into policy and promotion of New York agriculture with the New York Sustainable Agriculture Working Group and farmland protection activities in Wayne County, New York.

Most recently, she served as a consultant to New York State's Department of Agriculture and Markets on two pilot projects, Farm to Factory and Farm to Bakery, helping to grow business connections between farmers, millers and distributors and food processors and bakeries in New York City.

Glenda will be working from her home office in Auburn, New York and can be contacted by sending email to: gneff@farmland.org.

AFT's New York State office is located at 112 Spring Street, Suite 207, Saratoga Springs, NY and can be contacted by calling 518-581-0078 or send email to: newyork@farmland.org.

The American Farmland Trust is the nation's leading conservation organization dedicated to protecting farmland, promoting sound farming practices and keeping farmers on the land.

For information on American Farmland Trust's work in New York visit: www.farmland.org/newyork and Facebook:www.facebook.com/AmericanFarmlandtrustny.

CONTACT:
David Haight, New York State Director, American Farmland Trust
Phone: 518-727-5484
Email: newyork@farmland.org

SOURCE American Farmland Trust

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