Cuomo's Budget Promotes Upstate Businesses

January 27, 2013 Updated Jan 27, 2013 at 9:23 PM EDT

By Rachel Elzufon

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January 27, 2013 Updated Jan 27, 2013 at 9:23 PM EDT

Orchard Park, NY (WKBW) - Governor Cuomo plans to invest in a major marketing campaign, specifically in Upstate New York.

He says boosting tourism and the economy in The Empire State is all about the way we market local products in the region.

The marketing campaigning would bring two million dollars alone to the food and beverage industry -- bringing attention to some of the lesser known gems of our region, like Maple Syrup, often produced in Erie County.

Surrounded by wood cutters and sledders, is a maple syrup booth at Chestnut Ridge Park's Winter Fest.

Ed Kowalski, an Erie County Forester, tells Eyewitness News that the Erie County Department of Forestry "sets up a display here and that's how we get the word out that we do make, produce and sell maple syrup."

The Department of Forestry is just one part of a huge maple syrup industry in Western New York, that could soon benefit from Governor Andrew Cuomo's budget plan.

Cuomo is pushing Market NY -- a two-fold marketing plan to boost businesses Upstate.

Two million dollars would implement the Taste New York initiative, which would promote locally grown or produced food and drinks.

Kowalski explains the local maple syrup industry is "made in the northeastern states and Canada, so we have a worldwide market for it."

The industry could even bring in tourism. Kowalski says "Our production facility would draw people to at least look and see the process, how maple syrup is produced."

That ties into the other part of Cuomo's plan -- investing five million dollars through the Department of Economic Development to promote regional attractions.

In Western New York, an area full of scenery and hidden gems, the opportunities could be endless.