Albany, NY - October 15, 2014 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today signed legislation making yogurt the official snack of New York, in advance of the second New York State Yogurt Summit being held today. The Summit will bring together industry experts to discuss how to further grow the yogurt business and continue creating new jobs. The Empire State is the top producer of yogurt in the nation, generating 741 million pounds of yogurt in 2013 alone.
"This designation is a fitting recognition of the importance of this state’s yogurt industry, which has experienced tremendous growth over the past few years, making New York the top yogurt producer in the nation,” Governor Cuomo said. “We will continue to work with New York producers and dairy farmers to build upon this progress and further strengthen this critically important industry.”greek yogurt,
The tremendous boon in Greek-style yogurt has been the catalyst for the dairy industry's revitalization in New York. The State produced 741 million pounds of yogurt in 2013, up from 695 million pounds in 2012, accounting for 15.7% of the total U.S. yogurt production. Additionally, dairy manufacturers in New York employed an estimated 9,478 people with total wages of $513 million in 2013, an increase from 7,749 jobs and $401 million in wages in 2010.
Designating yogurt as the official state snack will continue to raise public awareness of the economic and health benefits of yogurt and the dairy industry. The Yogurt Summit convened in 2012 resulted in a number of initiatives to eliminate barriers to business growth and help manufacturers continue to grow.
State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer said, “Yogurt is now the official snack of New York State, and the fourth-graders at Byron-Bergen Elementary School deserve all of the credit. From initially suggesting the idea to traveling to the State Capitol earlier this year, these students deserve high marks for their efforts to get this legislation signed into law. I am pleased that the Governor has signed my bill into law.”
Assemblyman William Magee said, “I am pleased that the Governor is signing this bill, which recognizes the importance of the dairy and yogurt industry in New York.”