An exploratory interview with Shayna Cohen, Sr. Consultant at KK&P, has been integrated into the curriculum for a graduate level planning course titled “Planning Practice & History” at Cornell University. The interview and resulting paper focus on Shayna and KK&Ps work to develop a wholesale farmer’s market in New York City featuring growers from NY and adjacent states.
The project, begun in 2003, focused on issues related to the viability of a large, local-food based wholesale market operating out of the Hunt’s Point neighborhood in the Bronx area of NYC, where a majority of NY’s wholesale food trade is currently stationed. An initial eye into the demand for wholesale local produce market came via the long-established Union Square Farmer’s Market, where wholesale sales started happening organically, alongside direct-to-consumer sales.
Due to changing administrations and political issues within New York State, the project lagged for several years. However, in 2016, Gov. Cuomo committed significant budget to creating a food hub in the Bronx focused on local produce.
The final interview focuses on the findings, challenges and learning curves involved in planning to meet a booming demand for local food among wholesale buyers, contributions to farm viability through the creation of strong new market opportunities, and planning strategies relevant for working within government institutions.