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News stories tagged with "new-york"

One of Tri-Town's products--sausage. Photo: Sarah Harris
One of Tri-Town's products--sausage. Photo: Sarah Harris

Update: Tri-Town in negotiations with USDA

Correction, Friday, 12:00 p.m.: This story previously said that Jeff Liberty was "doubtful that he and his father will be able to convince the USDA to relax the rules." This mischaracterized Liberty's statement. His actual statement was as follows: "We're not going to change the rules and regulations for the USDA, and that's not what our intention is. But the way that they've been enforced, and the amount of personnel that have been devoted to our plant, in our opinion, is unfair."

The error has been corrected below.


Earlier this week, we reported that Tri-Town Processing in Brasher Falls - one of St. Lawrence County's biggest slaughterhouses - is no longer processing USDA-inspected meats for retail customers. That has the North Country farmers who raised those animals worried. Yesterday we checked in with co-owners Tom and Jeff Liberty. We were also in touch with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  Go to full article
Photo: David Sommerstein
Photo: David Sommerstein

NY dairy farms will get surprise inspections from OSHA

Workplace safety rules are about to get a little stricter on New York dairy farms. There's an ongoing, national debate about workplace safety on farms, which are exempt from many federal regulations.

In 2012, the Department of Labor proposed rules that would protect children from the most dangerous farm tasks. The Labor Department ended up withdrawing that proposal. About a year later, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, announced plans for a program of surprise inspections for New York dairies. The random visits are set to begin in July, in response to an alarming trend of frequent accidents in the industry.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="">Hendrike</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: Hendrike, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

"First ever" statewide heroin database in the works

Another development in the epidemic of North Country heroin abuse: On Wednesday, police caught a man with 60 grams of heroin, driving near Gouverneur. As the Watertown Daily Times reports, Elvis Pigott of Massena allegedly had about $20,000-worth of the drug.

Police arrested Pigott in the town of Fowler. According to the Times, the bust was part of an undercover operation into heroin trafficking by the St. Lawrence County Drug Task Force.

Pigott's charged with third-degree criminal possession with intent to sell, among other charges. The arrest involved multiple, local police departments, working together with the help of federal agents.  Go to full article
Papayas in Hawaii have been genetically engineered to resist the ringspot virus. Photo: <a href="">USDA</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Papayas in Hawaii have been genetically engineered to resist the ringspot virus. Photo: USDA, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Big agribusiness fights GMO labeling in New York

Advocates of labeling genetically modified crops (GMOs, or genetically modified organisms) recently made some progress in New York State. Last week, a labeling bill moved forward in the State Assembly committee system. Now, the bill's opponents in the agriculture industry are fighting back. This after Vermont passed the first GMO labeling law in the nation last week.

Food companies say modifying a crop's DNA is not dangerous. And the majority of scientific research supports that claim, according to a recent report from the Associated Press. But many people say consumers should still have a right to know whether the foods they buy contain GMOs.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="">Gary Stevens</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: Gary Stevens, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Massena responds to dirty needle discoveries

Massena's chief of police, Tim Currier, says he is looking into programs that would encourage safe disposal of used syringes. The syringes are a biohazard; sometimes they transmit diseases like Hepatitis C or HIV.

Last month, Massena police officers responded to 11 calls from people who found used syringes in public: in a park, near a school, and on Main Street.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="">WILPF</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: WILPF, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

New York is on the path to labeling GMOs, too

Today, Vermont will become the first state to enact a GMO labeling law. Many people want New York to follow suit. Foods with GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, are tweaked for certain characteristics, like disease resistance or size. GMOs are already on the market, in crops like soybean and corn.

Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal, a Democrat from New York City, is the lead sponsor of the New York GMO labeling bill. "The bill, actually, is a consumer right-to-know bill. Because people who purchase food for themselves and their family should know and want to know," Rosenthal said yesterday on the public radio program Capitol Pressroom.  Go to full article

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Photo: <a href="">Thomas Marthinsen</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: Thomas Marthinsen, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Car stopped in Queensbury held 500 bags of heroin

QUEENSBURY, N.Y. (AP) State police say a Vermont man and two people from New Jersey have been charged after troopers say they found hundreds of bags of heroin inside a vehicle they pulled over on an upstate New York highway.

Police say a trooper stopped the car for speeding in Interstate 87's northbound lanes Thursday afternoon in the Warren County town of Queensbury, 50 miles north of Albany.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="">Henry M. Diaz</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: Henry M. Diaz, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Small farms continue to struggle in New York

New York has lost 2 percent of its farms since 2007, 814 in all. That's according to the first glimpse of new agricultural census data released Thursday.

Small farms continue to struggle the most.

New York had 35,538 farms in 2012, when the US Department of Agriculture conducted its census, which it does every five years.  Go to full article

Feds urge more talks on NY Medicaid application

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York has revised its request for a $10 billion Medicaid adjustment, which would allow using that money to pay for related health care programs, after federal officials concluded capital investment and some other programs are ineligible.

The application was first filed 18 months ago, prompting Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state health commissioner to publicly blame the delay for threatening financially distressed New York hospitals.  Go to full article

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