Garden State summers could soon be “Jersey Fresh Season”

Garden State summers could soon be “Jersey Fresh Season”

Parker Space

TRENTON, N.J. – Assemblyman Parker Space’s joint resolution designating June through September as “Jersey Fresh Season” unanimously passed the Assembly Thursday.

“It wouldn’t be summer in New Jersey without farm-fresh crops like tomatoes, corn, blueberries and peaches. Residents have access to nutrient-rich bountiful harvests, because of our hard working farmers,” Space (R-Sussex) said. “Designating summer months as Jersey Fresh Season is another opportunity for our state to promote our famous produce and allows us to make the connection between locally-sourced fruits and vegetables and healthy lifestyles.”

The joint resolution (AJR21) calls for celebrating Jersey Fresh Season with appropriate activities and programs, and authorizes the secretary of agriculture to recognize certain crops or agricultural products each month.

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture created Jersey Fresh in 1984, the first-in-the-nation state-sponsored agricultural branding program. The program serves to distinguish New Jersey’s high quality fruits and vegetables from others in the marketplace. More than 30 other states have since created their own agricultural promotional programs following New Jersey’s model.

“Today, New Jerseyans are fortunate to be able to find Jersey Fresh everywhere from local farm markets, to grocery stores and restaurants. Buying Jersey Fresh products helps support our economy, most specifically struggling farmers and small businesses, while we feed our families nutritious food picked at its most flavorful peak,” Space said.

New Jersey grows more than 100 different varieties of fruits, vegetables and herbs and is ranked among the nation’s top 10 producers of blueberries, peaches, bell peppers, squash, tomatoes and cranberries. The state is home to 9,900 farms.