A dairy cooperative headquartered in Cheektowaga has joined the ranks of companies recognized by New York State as "Grown and Certified."
Upstate Niagara has been given the New York State Grown & Certified designation by the state's Agriculture Department. The program recognizes producers that are based in New York, demonstrate that they practice set food safety standards and demonstrate an equal responsibility with environmental practices.
"We need to make sure we leave the environment for the next generation in a better way, which is why we look carefully at our nutrients and how we manage our water runoff on all ouor farms, whether they be a dairy farm, a vegetable farm, whether it be a Christmas tree farm or a greenhouse operation," said New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard Ball.
Upstate Niagara's products will be allowed to display the Grown & Certified seal. Ball says what that means to consumers is a sign they can have full faith in what they're buying, while knowing they're supporting jobs within the state.
"It'll tell you that their farms are doing the right kind of job," Ball said. "The idea is that consumer, whatever kind of consumers they are, can look for that symbol and feel good about what they're providing for their family."
Upstate Niagara Cooperative's member brands include Upstate Farms, Upstate Farms Food Service, Intense Milk, Oatka, Valley Farms and Bison.