A $1 million agricultural development center with a Taste NY store is headed to Cornell Cooperative Extension in the Town of Dickinson, officials said Thursday.
The plans call for renovating the old Cutler House, just south of the cooperative extension's main building at 840 Upper Front St., and constructing a roughly 3,200-square-foot addition.
Along with the Taste NY store, the center will include a classroom and a boardroom where farmers, students and other people interested in agriculture can take classes, and certification and training programs. It will also be a place where farmers can get help with business planning and market development, according to officials.
"This really turns (Cornell Cooperative Extension) into an (agricultural) hub," Executive Director Victoria Giarratano said Wednesday.
The new agricultural development center is expected to open in November.
For students, the center will be an open door to a career in food systems, state and local officials said Thursday.
The plans also fit into the idea that Greater Binghamton is emerging as a food hub, with a blossoming dining scene downtown and SUNY Broome Community College's plans to open a culinary school on Exchange Street.
"If you look around this community, there is such energy and excitement around food right now," Lupardo said. "I am so proud of our community for not only (recognizing) the importance of farming and agriculture, but (also) the importance of good, quality food that's grown locally."
New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball, who delivered the agricultural development center announcement at Thursday's news conference, also announced Cornell University will receive $625,000 for the Stocker Cattle Initiative, funding training and research in that industry.
Last updated March 25, 2016