Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
Michael Moran, 518-457-0752

August 10, 2011

Commissioner Announces State Eco-Friendly Farming Award

Porter Family of Adams Center Wins State’s Agricultural Environmental Management Award

Porterdale Farms in Adams Center, Jefferson County is the recipient of this year’s New York State Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) Award, announced New York State Agriculture Commissioner Darrel J. Aubertine. The Porters, along with the Jefferson County Soil and Water District, were honored during the Agricultural Leadership Luncheon ceremonies today at Empire Farm Days in Seneca Falls.

“In business for more than seven decades, Porterdale Farms has had a longstanding commitment to being good stewards of the land and serving their community,” said Commissioner Aubertine.  “As one of New York’s first large livestock farms to be regulated, this farm family was quick to adopt AEM into their business plan, allowing them to meet requirements and advance their conservation efforts, while helping their farm business thrive.  Congratulations to the Porter family – you have rightfully earned this esteemed recognition.”

The AEM Award is presented annually to a farm family that practices sound agricultural stewardship by incorporating the AEM program into the operation of their farm business. The county Soil and Water Conservation District is also recognized for their important role in providing necessary technical assistance and resources.

Porterdale Farms was started in 1938 by Glenn and Ruth Porter with 198 acres and 35 cows.  Today, David and Judy Porter with sons Greg and Ron and grandsons David, Jameson, Casey and Andrew, have 1700 mature cows and 1300 replacement heifers. They crop alfalfa, grass, hay, corn silage and corn grain on 4,500 acres.

State Soil and Water Conservation Committee Chairman George Proios said, “The Porter’s work with the Jefferson County Soil and Water Conservation District to continually evaluate their conservation systems and improve upon their stewardship is truly commendable!”

The Porters and the Jefferson County Soil and Water District were selected for the 2011 AEM award because of their demonstrated commitment to managing, protecting and improving natural resources.  Porterdale Farms built a new freestyle barn, eliminating the need for barnyard water management.  They practice conservation tillage to prevent soil erosion, installed a silage leachate collection system to protect water quality and planted a tree, shrub and grass buffer to help protect Sandy Creek, which is the main source of drinking water for the Village of Adams.

Six other New York farms and Conservation Districts were recognized by the Commissioner for Honorable Mention.  They are:

  • Eight Mile Creek Farm of Westerlo, sponsored by Albany County Soil and Water Conservation District
  • Aurora Ridge Dairy, LLC of Aurora, sponsored by Cayuga County Soil and Water Conservation District
  • Downing Acres of Burke, sponsored by Franklin County Soil and Water Conservation District
  • Hillsprings Farm of Addison, sponsored by Steuben County Soil and Water Conservation District
  • Jerry Dell Farms of  Dryden, sponsored by Tompkins County Soil and Water Conservation District
  • Heritage Hill Farms of Fort Ann, sponsored by Washington County Soil and Water Conservation District

With over 12,000 farms participating, New York’s AEM program serves as a national model of how a voluntary, incentive-based approach can successfully protect the State's natural resources, while meeting the economic needs of our diverse agricultural community.  The AEM partnership of local, state and federal agencies, environmental groups, businesses and farmers, provides the technical, educational and financial assistance to develop and implement sound farm conservation plans.

The 18th AnnualAgricultural Environmental Management Award is jointly sponsored by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, American Agriculturist Magazine and the Empire State Potato Growers.

2011 Press Releases