Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
Joe Morrissey, 518-457-0752,
Dave Bullard, 315-487-7711 x 1377,

May 27, 2014

Department of Agriculture and Markets Solicits Applications for Agricultural Environmental Management Award

State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball today announced that nominations are being accepted for the statewide Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) Award.  Each year, the State Department of Agriculture and Markets, Empire State Potato Growers, and American Agriculturist magazine host this distinguished award, which highlights the outstanding environmental stewardship accomplished by farmers in partnership with respective County Soil and Water Conservation Districts.  The winner will be announced during the Agricultural Leadership Luncheon at Empire Farm Days in Seneca Falls this August.

“As a farm owner for 20 years, my land is my livelihood, and I’ve worked with the Soil and Water Conservation District in Schoharie County a number of times to get the most out of it in an environmentally sound way,” said Commissioner Ball.  “This year, our goal is to honor the farm that takes environmental stewardship through the AEM program to that next level.  We’re looking for creative ideas and examples of good partnerships with local Districts.  We look forward to a worthy competition in 2014.”

AEM is a voluntary, incentive-based program that helps New York State farmers make common-sense, cost-effective and science-based decisions to help meet business objectives while protecting and conserving the State’s natural resources.  New York farms have long recognized that environmental stewardship is valuable to productive farms.  With the support of Districts delivering local AEM programs and service throughout farming communities, New York is doing its part to conserve and protect the state’s water quality and natural resources.  In appreciation of this partnership, the winning farm family and nominating District will each receive a financial incentive to help them continue their programs.  In addition, all nominees will receive recognition for their valuable efforts.

The Nomination Form must be received at the Department of Agriculture and Markets via email no later than close of business on Wednesday, June 11, 2014 to

The form can be downloaded at the following link:

Since 1993, the State Environmental Protection Fund has been funding programs that help farmers to apply conservation on their lands, thereby protecting drinking water supplies and water resources across the state. Since the EPF was signed into law 20 years ago, over $120 million has been invested in the State’s Agricultural Environmental Management initiative, helping farms preserve and protect the State’s vital natural resources. 

For more information about AEM, please visit:

2014 Press Releases