City seeks to grow specialty food and beverage industry

The city is hoping to help more local food and beverage manufactures distribute their products on a wider scale, like Brooklyn Brewery.  Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images
The city is hoping to help more local food and beverage manufactures distribute their products on a wider scale, like Brooklyn Brewery.
Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Small businesses making artisanal cheese, locally brewed beer and other specialty foods are cropping up more in the five boroughs, but the City Council is hoping to make operating these local food and beverage firms easier.

Since 2008, the number of specialty food and beverage manufacturers has grown by more than 11 percent, to 1,097 such firms last year, according a Pratt Center study on the industry commissioned by the council and released Tuesday.

“This report shows there’s a big appetite for economic growth in our local food and beverage manufacturing industry,” City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said in a statement.

The study found the city needs to better support burgeoning small businesses so they can become larger companies and employ more New Yorkers.

The report recommends increasing financial assistance for local businesses seeking to sell their products to larger companies, such as creating a modified loan program for small firms. A Specialty Food Industry Development Corporation, the report says, could address challenges across the sector cooperatively.

The report also suggests creating a co-packing facility for smaller manufacturers to share so that they might fill larger orders and keep production in the city.

“A critical next step for economic growth is for food entrepreneurs to transition from distributing their products themselves to working with other food companies and distributors to get onto more shelves,” Adam Friedman, director of the Pratt Center for Community Development, said in a statement.

The specialty food and beverage industry employs about 15,000 New Yorkers, officials said.

For the report, the Pratt Center spoke with industry stakeholders, including manufactures, distributors, buyers and food experts.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Grimm choice: Tax fraud trial could dog NY…

Rep. Michael Grimm may be splitting his time between the campaign trail and a courtroom where he is due to face tax evasion charges.

Local

Met Opera, unions extend talks for 72 hours,…

Met Opera agreed to extend negotiations with its labor unions for 72 hours, preventing a threatened lockout, the organization said late Thursday.

Local

MAP: New York City street closures August 2…

Summer Streets, the NYC Triathlon, the Ecuadorian Parade and festivals will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend.

Local

Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on 'Calvary' and his very…

Brendan Gleeson discusses how "Calvary" began over drinks and how his priest character is the opposite of the officer he played in "The Guard."

Movies

Interview: Chris O'Dowd does funny and serious in…

Chris O'Dowd talks about "Calvary," an Irish comedy-drama about a priest (Brendan Gleeson) under fire.

Movies

'Alive Inside' and 'Code Black' are documentaries with…

Two new documentaries — "Alive Inside" and "Code Black" — portray different issues but suffer from the same problem.

Music

Caught a Ghost catches a soul/rap vibe

Jesse Nolan says Caught a Ghost's sound aims for two things everybody likes: soul music and '90s rap.

MLB

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade…

Yankees land Stephen Drew, Martin Prado at trade deadline

College

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

Career

What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.

Style

Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.

Style

Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.

Wellbeing

Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…