New York has been selected by The U.S. Department of Agriculture to test Greek yogurt as a meat alternative in school lunches. The decision follows a USDA decision in January that determined Greek yogurt can be classified as a protein. Greek yogurt has about twice the protein of regular yogurt.
New York companies produce about 70 percent of the nation’s $6 billion industry.
If the pilot program succeeds, Greek yogurt could become a staple on the USDA Foods List for schools around the country.
The Business Council has long supported the Dine: Pride of New York Program bill that was passed by both the Senate and Assembly Thursday. In a bill memo supporting the measure, The Business Council wrote, “Eating organic, the local food movement, and agri-tourism have all contributed to helping local restaurants succeed. The Business Council supports the Dine: Pride of New York program for continuing to find creative ways to bolster New York’s top industries.” Specifically, the memo notes, “This new program is intended to specifically help promote restaurants that use a substantial amount of New York State grown and manufactured ingredients in their menus. Although restaurants are permitted to apply and participate in the original program, the new Dine: Pride of New York program is specifically tailored to restaurants, and the promotional materials and marketing efforts can be used to attract both in-state residents and visiting tourists.”
Indeed, The Business Council’s own Made in New York initiative has gained much attention because of renewed interest by consumers to buy locally. Take a look at our Made in New York website and consider becoming a part of the Made in New York Movement. Promote your business, promote your products, promote New York.
Workforce development has been one of The Business Council’s leading concerns as more and more of it members report a shortage of workers with skills to fill high-skill jobs. On its Education and Workforce Development committee webpage, The Business Council wrote about the importance of training individuals in STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and math — “[it’s] critical if we want to stay competitive in the global economy. The Business Council supports initiatives that foster the development of a 21st century workforce, ensure that students are well prepared for entrance into college and career, and strengthen partnerships between private-sector companies, colleges and local school districts.”
In a report in the Times Union, Eric Anderson cited a report by America’s Edge, “a business-supported organization that advocates investments in education, they warned that the state will eventually face a shortage of 350,000 workers with the skills to fill so-called “middle-skill” jobs, those that require training beyond high school but not a bachelor’s degree.”
This week, the fourth annual Electric City Couture Show will aim to grow the local economy showcasing local fashion and connecting consumers with local goods. The show’s producer, Corey Aldrich, says the show creates opportunity for both regional designers and regional boutiques, and that putting dollars back into the local economy just makes sense with “the goal being to build a fashion economy in upstate New York.” The Electric City Couture Show is this Friday, May 24, at Proctors Theater in Schenectady, N.Y. Admission is free.
Zogby Analytics and SUNYIT have partnered to create the SUNYIT/ Zogby Analytics Poll, releasing their first poll today on Americans and emergency situations.
SUNYIT President Bjong Wolf Yeigh, said, “We are pleased to inaugurate the SUNYIT/Zogby Analytics Poll with an examination of issues that are important to every American. The findings certainly provide food for thought and a starting point for discussion in many areas. I want to thank John Zogby and Zogby Analytics for their expertise, insight and analysis. We look forward to the continuation of our partnership and the exploration of important topics in future SUNYIT/Zogby Analytics Polls.”
Although temperatures have been cooler the last few days, New York’s apple crop is on the rebound. Jim Allen, president and CEO of the New York Apple Association, said that. ‘some growers last year lost 60 to 70 percent of their crop because of a late April frost’ but that so far this year’s crop is in excellent shape.
Bloomberg News: The Federal Reserve Bank of New York said tight credit restrained the growth plans of many small businesses in 2012, citing a survey of lending in its district conducted in March and April.
Nearly half (49 percent) of firms polled cited access to capital as a barrier to growth, but only a third of firms actually report applying for credit in the last year. While the concern was mostly (66 percent) among those firms operating at a loss, 36 percent of profitable firms also reported difficulty getting the credit they needed to expand their businesses.
Senator Schumer recently announced that Delta Airlines will upgrade to larger airplanes for flights from Rochester-to-Atlanta. Starting in July, the route will be serviced with MD-90 planes that offer 33 more seats than before.
Late Monday night, the U.S. Senate passed a bill which permits states to collect sales tax on goods purchased on the Internet. USA Today published a map that shows the estimated uncollected taxes (in millions) from online purchases in 2012, by state. It shows New York had $865.5 million in unc0llected taxes, the third most after California, $1.9 million and Texas, $870.4 million. The measure could have a large impact on the ability of small online retailers to grow.