State ag commissioner urges residents to support local Christmas tree farms

Posted 24 November 2020 at 4:18 pm

Press Release, NYS Department of Agriculture

Provided photo: Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball, left, was at Goderie’s Tree Farm on Monday to promote Christmas tree farms in the state.

New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball on Monday visited Goderie’s Tree Farm in Johnstown, Fulton County, for the annual tree cutting to promote New York’s Christmas tree farms and encourage New Yorkers to shop at local agricultural businesses this holiday season.

Following State Covid-19 guidelines, New York tree farms offer families a fun and safe way to celebrate the season. By purchasing from any of the 750 local tree farms in the State, New Yorkers can support this important agricultural industry, which has an economic impact of $13.8 million, according to the Christmas Tree Farmers Association of New York.

Commissioner Ball said: “It is more important this year than ever that New Yorkers support local farmers and businesses when doing their holiday shopping, whether they’re looking for a Christmas tree or a delicious addition to their holiday meal. Visiting a tree farm this year to cut your own tree is great, socially distanced, and fun way to celebrate this season while supporting your local farm and the agricultural economy.”

With approximately 300,000 New York-grown trees sold by more than 750 farms in Upstate New York, the state ranks sixth in the U.S. for the number of acres dedicated to growing Christmas trees.

Robert Schoch, Interim Executive Director of the Christmas Tree Farmers Association of New York, said: “Selecting a New York State grown Christmas tree offers a family experience in the outdoors. As you visit farms, be aware that New York growers have developed safety plans to ensure that this is a safe and rewarding experience. When other holiday experiences are limited this year, selecting a New York grown tree provides an opportunity to enjoy the season and continue a family tradition.”

Pete Goderie, owner of Goderie’s Tree Farm, said: “With nearly 800 tree farms in New York State, consumers can easily support a local tree farm, providing a shot in the arm to our industry. Visiting a New York tree farm to pick your own tree is the perfect way to gather with your family this season for a holiday tradition while being safe and socially distanced.”