Borough President Richards Wants You to Eat Your Veggies

Borough President Richards Wants You to Eat Your Veggies
Seasonal Farmstand Sprouts Up at Queens Borough Hall

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has partnered with Queens County Farm Museum to open the first farmstand located in front of Queens Borough Hall. Beginning July 1, 2021 through November 4th, this weekly farmstand will be open 10:00 am – 3:00 pm every Thursday, weather permitting. Only 8.2 miles from Queens Farm to Borough Hall, Queens Farm shortens the distance from farm to farmstand featuring hyper locally grown fruits, vegetables, herbs, flowers and other farm products. The Borough Hall farmstand will also serve as a food scrap drop-off location. Food scraps collected will be brought back to Queens Farm for composting. Centrally located, the Borough Hall farmstand is accessible from the E/F train, LIRR, three highways – Grand Central, Jackie Robinson and Van Wyck Parkways – and 16 MTA bus stops less than one mile from Queens Borough Hall.

Queens Farm grows over 200 varieties of fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers. The farm’s 2021 crop plan includes 30 new varieties of produce such as: Artichokes, Mardi Gras (blend of bush beans), beet greens, Eastern Magic broccoli, Merlot Napa cabbage, celery, collard greens, cucamelons, ginger, Coastal Star lettuce, mini honeydew, mini watermelon, Carmine Splendor okra (red), Poblano peppers, Sugar Rush Cream hot pepper, red potatoes, Yukon potatoes, pie pumpkin, strawberry spinach, patty pan squash, spaghetti squash, acorn squash, two new sweet potato varieties, two new tomato varieties, one new cherry tomato variety, turmeric, and the herb Zaatar. Last year, Queens Farm harvested 21,600 pounds, 10,400 units of food and produced 3,500 dozen eggs, 600 pounds of honey, 225 packages of herbal tea and 100 skeins of yarn, all from its own resources. This year, Queens Farm is on track to increase food production by at least 30%. 

The farmstand at Borough Hall is Queens Farm’s third farmstand in Queens. Queens Farm hosts an onsite farmstand in Floral Park and a second farmstand in partnership with Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in front of the hospital’s “Axel” Building at 134-20 Jamaica Avenue. Each of the three farmstands will showcase produce grown on Queens Farm’s 47-acre site in Floral Park, Queens. Queens Farm accepts multiple forms of nutrition assistance programs such as SNAP/EBT benefits, WIC, FMNP Checks, Health Bucks Fresh Connect Checks along with cash, credit and debit cards at each location.

“We saw food insecurity hit record highs during the COVID-19 pandemic, exposing a true need for access throughout our Borough. Thanks to this effort with the Queens County Farm Museum, we are providing access in front of Queens Borough Hall to locally grown nutritious food. As we bounce back from the fallout of this pandemic, we must continue to ensure we do all we can to put fruits and vegetables on Queens families’ tables,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr.

“We thank Queens Borough President Donovan Richards for providing access to farm fresh produce at Queens Borough Hall,” noted Jennifer Walden Weprin, Executive Director of Queens County Farm Museum. “With the increased demand for locally grown produce, this farmstand expansion supports Queen Farm’s mission to help feed New Yorkers.”

Queens Farm has been feeding hungry New Yorkers for over 300 years. The partnership with Borough President Richards supports the mutual goal of providing expanded access to locally grown produce and encouraging Queens residents to eat their veggies.