Located in Hunts Point, Bronx, the Co-Op lacks emergency power generators – necessary in case of a prolonged power outage – and needs back-up electricity in case of emergencies. It supplies around 50% of the meat consumed in New York and a loss of power could be detrimental to the local economy, as it supports $650m of direct and indirect economic activity in the Big Apple.
“The Hunts Point Cooperative Market is critical to the local Bronx economy, providing thousands of well-paying jobs and also serving a vital purpose in supplying 50% of the meat consumed in the New York region,” said Bruce Reingold, general manager of the Co-Op.
“This supports tens of thousands of additional jobs in the hospitality and food service sectors. We are one of the city’s leading business incubators and I want to thank the council for its advocacy and recognition of the important role we play.”
‘Important’ first step
Efforts to provide the Co-Op with funding were spearheaded by the NY city council member Rafael Salamanca Jr, who said: “The Hunts Point Market is incredibly important to our local community, our city and our state, and I’m pleased that I am able to help fund this much needed infrastructure.”
The Hunts Point Meat Market was originally built in 1972 as a six building 40-acre facility. It now has over 60 acres with seven buildings housing one million square feet of refrigerated space.
Andrew Sussman, president of Plymouth Beef Company and chairman of the Co-Op, said: “This is an important first step in moving towards the modernisation of the facilities that supply the bulk of the food that New Yorkers depend upon.”
Sussman said the business could lose its entire inventory if it lost power and didn’t have access to a reliable emergency back-up. This, he said, could result in “disrupting the city and thousands of businesses’ affordable food supply”.