While New York State’s efforts to mitigate the impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19) continue, the state and our agricultural community are working together to keep agricultural products moving, our communities and families fed, and our animals cared for.
Here is the latest guidance that the agricultural industry needs to know. The Department is continuing to monitor developments related to COVID-19, and we will continue to update this page as new information becomes available.
- New York State has not restricted food producing farms, farmers’ markets, grocery stores, retail food stores, food pantries, food banks, and food and beverage manufacturing facilities from being open. These operations are exempt under the mass gatherings guidance as essential food supply chain industries.
- Food producing farms, fisheries, operations that care for animals, farmers’ markets, food and beverage manufacturers/processors, grocery stores, retail food stores, food pantries, food banks, gas stations, and convenience stores are exempt from the state’s guidance for workforce reduction.
- Businesses and vendors supplying goods and services to these essential industries, such as agri-businesses and operations supporting animal health, are also exempt.
- These businesses are exempt because they are essential food supply chain and related industries. They can continue to operate with their full workforce.
- Forest products businesses, including those involved in forestry operations, logging, manufacture of lumber and paper products, and the distribution of those products are essential and exempt from the State's guidance for workforce reduction.
- Learn more about workforce reductions.
- Malls are closed as of March 19, 2020 at 9 pm.
- However, grocery stores and retail food stores within malls are exempt from this directive and can remain open.
- There are no travel restrictions in place.
- Businesses that are interested in being deemed an essential business should contact [email protected] to learn how to apply for a waiver.
- Everyone should continue to practice social distancing and proper hand washing and sanitizing of their facilities.
- Visit the Department of Health to learn more.
- New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets staff continue to conduct all food safety, dairy, and plant inspections.
Additional information and resources on topics like pets, protocols for food manufacturers and retail food stores, obtaining a business waiver, and more are available below.