ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Office of New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Friday that new funding has been allocated to the emergency food providers bringing produce to needy families through the Nourish NY program.

Since forming, Nourish NY has already facilitated distributions of more than 16 million pounds of dairy, produce, meat, and other food items from local farmers to 823,883 households statewide. The initiative was originally launched with $25 million in support. Officials predict that this original $25 million will be depleted by November 1.

As of Friday, a $10 million infusion brings the total funding dedicated to program since it started up to $35 million.

“The pandemic has been difficult for all of us, including our agricultural community and the families they feed. The Nourish New York program has successfully bridged the gap between our families, our food banks, and our farmers.” Cuomo said. “Still, there is a very clear need in our communities. By extending the Nourish New York program and providing another $10 million to our regional food banks and local food providers, we can continue to support and help New Yorkers put food on the table while ensuring an economic benefit to our farmers through the holiday season, which can be a challenging time for families.”

The added funding comes from the CARES Act. Its aim is supporting families through the end of the year, specifically for the holiday season, which can be a challenging time. Food banks and other emergency food providers can spend the money allocated by:

  • Purchasing products directly from New York agricultural producers for their programs
  • Setting up food-drive through events/giveaways
  • Distributing dairy vouchers

Foodbank purchases have relieved 4,140 farms from having to dump surplus supplies. State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said that Nourish NY “is successfully connecting the dots between our farmers who are struggling and our families who are in need. I am proud of the program’s reach and the relationships that have been forged. Nourish New York has provided families with fresh and nutritious local food and a much-needed market for our agricultural producers and processors.”