Albany, NY (WIBX) - Governor Andrew Cuomo is raising a glass today as the Wine and Beer Summit gets underway.

Cornell Cooperative Senior Research Educator Steve Miller, who works with hops growers, says the industry is growing at a rapid pace in New York.

He says hops growers in New York differ from those in other states because they are generally smaller, family farmers.

And, unlike in other states, they are able to sell directly to beer producers, and are playing a significant role in the future of farming and the economy in New York state.

Miller says there are currently about eighty hops farmers in the state who sell directly to brewers. One of the purposes of today's Wine and Beer Summit is to make it easier for that number to grow.