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

February 10, 2016

New York State Research and Testing Laboratories Host Tech Valley High School Students

Freshmen and Sophomore Students Get Hands-On Learning Opportunity at Renowned, State-of-the-Art Facility

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard A. Ball and staff today hosted students from Tech Valley High School at the New York State Food Laboratory.  More than a dozen students got an up-close look inside the state-of-the-art research and testing labs as part of their I-term experience, which allows the students to learn first-hand about careers at businesses and non-profits in the Capital Region.

“We are pleased to host these students and provide them with a better understanding of what we do at the Department and the role our nationally renowned lab plays in the agricultural industry and beyond,” said Commissioner Ball.  “The work done in our New York State labs is critical to protecting consumers and we’re extremely proud of the cutting-edge research and testing being conducted by our staff.”

This morning, students toured the New York Food Laboratory, which provides expert, analytical testing capacity in the areas of microbiology and chemistry to support food safety and security programs, as well as protect consumer and agricultural interests in New York State.  The Food Lab collaborates with federal and state organizations like the Food and Drug Administration, U.S. Department of Agriculture and the New York State Department of Health’s Wadsworth Laboratory.  In 2015, more than 20,000 food and pesticide samples were analyzed in the New York State Food Laboratory, leading to nearly 240 recalls of adulterated food products.

Students were able to get a first-hand look at the testing methods of food and beverage samples for specific health hazards, purity of a food product and accuracy of labeling. 

The visit to the New York State Food Laboratory builds on Tech Valley High School’s I-term experiences this semester. Tech Valley High School is a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM)-based school, and the tour helped the students learn about the Department’s involvement in innovative, high-tech research and testing.

I-term is an annual project that gives Tech Valley High School students the opportunity to explore their interests and gain experiential learning in careers first-hand. The program is designed to foster direct workplace interaction between students and professionals to give students a realistic understanding of an industry or field of study. I-term starts freshman year and scaffolds to build in complexity over four years.

Tech Valley High School (TVHS) is a regional public high school that is built on the principle of project-based learning and collaboration. Students learn through hands-on projects based in real world applications of Common Core subjects. The school partners with business leaders throughout the region to incorporate true-to-life experience into student learning. In the heart of the region's fast-growing technology sector, TVHS exposes students to aspects of the global economy while building on its mission of developing 21st century skills while meeting New York State learning standards. For more information, go to

For more information about the Department of Agriculture and Markets’ New York State Food Laboratory please visit, and for the Bureau of Weights and Measures, please visit


2016 Press Releases