Agriculture_Markets
Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
 
   
Jessica A. Chittenden
518-457-3136
jessica.chittenden@agriculture.ny.gov


February 23, 2007

Mercerís Dairy Expands Manufacturing Operations

Acting Commissioner Joins in Grand Opening of New & Expanded Ice Cream Facility

New York State Acting Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker today visited Mercerís Dairy, where he joined its owners in cutting the ribbon for its new state-of-the-art ice cream plant. Mercerís Dairy is located in Boonville, Oneida County and utilizes milk from local farms to manufacture ice cream and other ice cream products.

"Mercerís growth is a prime example of the significance of New Yorkís dairy industry," Hooker said. "Dairy processors, like Mercerís, have one of the highest economic multipliers than any other industry in the State. While our nearly 7,000 dairy farms contribute more than $1.9 billion each year to the Stateís economy, every dollar of output from dairy processing returns $1.26 to the local economy. In addition, for every job in dairy processing, it creates an additional 4.72 jobs for the local community."

"That is why Mercerís expansion is truly outstanding in many ways. By expanding their production capacity, they are not only offering a critical service to dairy farmers in the North Country by utilizing more local milk and adding value to their product, they are also creating additional economic activity and jobs for their local community."

The new Boonville plant will be capable of producing over 1.5 million gallons of ice cream each year, an increase of more than ten times its previous production levels. In addition to the increase in production, Mercerís will be adding a new 18-foot freezer truck to assure quality delivery. The new plant will also create several new jobs as a result of the capacity increase. The milk supplied to Mercerís will continue to be provided by Quality Dairy Farms. Inc, which consists of nine Lewis County farm families.

Currently, Mercerís makes everything from ethnic flavors to port wine flavored ice cream. The expansion however will enable the dairy to move into the expanding market of custom or private label ice cream manufacturing throughout New York State and beyond.

Mercerís attributes its success in part to its participation in the Pride of New York Program, the Stateís marketing and promotion program that generates interest and demand for New York food and agricultural products.

Roxaina Hurlburt, Vice President of Marketing for Mercerís Dairy, said, "Because Mercerís has been part of many Pride of New York events, we have made many contacts and secured new business. Several of our best customers either contacted us or became aware of Mercerís from the exposure gained through the Pride Program."

New York is the nationís third largest dairy state behind California and Wisconsin. Twenty-five percent of the milk produced in New York is for fluid consumption with 75 percent processed into ice cream, yogurt, cheese and butter. Last year, New York produced more than 30 million gallons of ice cream and 24 million gallons of other frozen dairy desserts, such as milk sherbet and ice cream mix. New York is ranked in the top ten for ice cream production.

The Pride of New York Program promotes New York food and agricultural products by assisting growers and food processors to brand their products by using the Pride of New York emblem, and encouraging retailers, restaurants, and distributors to highlight the New York State products they use and sell by displaying the emblem. Its statewide membership includes nearly 2,000 growers and food processors, restaurants and retail outlets, wineries, wholesalers and distributors, agri-tourism initiatives and trade associations that support New York agriculture.

For more information on Mercerís Dairy, visit mercersdairy.com. To learn more about the Pride of New York, visit prideofny.com.


2007 Press Releases