A new Kootenay Farms Food Hub facility will be opening in Creston this fall to support food processing, packaging, and distribution to increase access to additional healthy, local foods in the region. The project is being led by the Fields Forward Society and will use equipment such as the Kootenay Mobile Press (pictured). (Submitted)

A new Kootenay Farms Food Hub facility will be opening in Creston this fall to support food processing, packaging, and distribution to increase access to additional healthy, local foods in the region. The project is being led by the Fields Forward Society and will use equipment such as the Kootenay Mobile Press (pictured). (Submitted)

Creston’s upcoming food processing facility will allow for new value-added products

With affordable equipment, farmers and growers can create new items like jerky, jam, and juice

Soon, the development of the Kootenay Farms Food Hub will offer a new way for local farmers and growers to expand their offerings of delicious, healthy food products.

This fall, a food processing facility will be built in Creston as part of a project led by the Fields Forward Society.

The Columbia Basin Trust has provided $150,000 and funding, and the British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries will also contribute up to $500,000 to purchase food-processing equipment, renovate the facility, and cover staffing for two years.

“People in the Columbia Basin have always been aware of the importance of local food security, and the pandemic has brought this issue even more to the forefront,” said Katie Kendall, senior manager of special initiatives at Columbia Basin Trust.

“This facility will help increase the locally-made food and beverage options available in the region, benefiting the people who live here, helping the region’s producers expand, and creating local employment.”

There is already an abundant food supply available in the Kootenays, with local products including cheese, meat, grains, and fruits.

The processing facility, which has been talked about for over a decade, will provide an opportunity to diversify and create value-added foods with a longer shelf life, such as fruit juices, jams, jerky, and salsas.

The hope is the regional food hub will also encourage collaboration and communication on certain aspects like marketing, packaging, transportation, and distribution.

These innovations should help producers to cut costs and scale up their businesses, while still being able to provide foods that are all grown, produced, and processed locally.

The new facility will provide space and equipment for processing at an affordable price. There will be dehydrators, blenders, and mills for dry foods as well as kettles and pasteurizers for wet foods.

A full launch of the facility is expected in winter 2022.

READ MORE: Regional food processing facility coming to Creston

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: Kelsey.yates@crestonvalleyadvance.ca


 

@kelseyannayates
kelsey.yates@crestonvalleyadvance.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Creston ValleyFood

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Creston Town Hall. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Ellen Tzakis resigns from Creston Town Council

Council is preparing to hold a by-election later this year

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a 'person of interest' in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
Man sought in suspicious Kootenay death found in Lake Country

Philip Toner is a person of interest in the death of Brenda Ware

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
65 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Overall, B.C. is seeing a decrease in COVID-19 cases

School District 8 employees Shannon Tetz, Cheryl Rendek, and Janet Wall officially began their retirement with a COVID-friendly send-off outside of Prince Charles Secondary School. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
School District 8 employees Shannon Tetz, Cheryl Rendek, and Janet Wall officially began their retirement with a COVID-friendly send-off outside of Prince Charles Secondary School. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Three women retire from School District 8 with COVID-friendly celebration

Shannon Tetz, Cheryl Rendek, and Janet Wall shared 87 years of service collectively

Two Creston Schools have reported potential COVID exposure. (Submitted photo)
Two Creston schools report potential COVID-19 exposure

Those who tested positive on May 3, 4 are now self-isolating at home

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

Keith MacIntyre - BC Libertarian
Penticton’s Keith MacIntyre new leader of the B.C. Libertarian Party

The Penticton businessman was voted in by members of the party on May 8

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP reported to 287 mental health calls between Jan. 1, 2021, and May 1. (Black Press files)
‘It’s not the police’s responsibility to deal with mental health calls’: Vernon RCMP

RCMP remind public to take care of mental health and well-being, while better solutions are sought

Thompson Rivers University campus is in Kamloops, B.C. (KTW file photo)
Thompson Rivers the 1st B.C. university to supply free menstrual products

The university will offer the products this September

Fraser Health is using ‘targeted’ vaccination clinics in high-risk areas of the Lower Mainland. (Fraser Health photo)
B.C.’s COVID-19 decrease continues, 515 new cases Tuesday

426 seriously ill people in hospital, up from 415 Monday

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The site of Sunfest, Laketown Ranch, will be open for camping this summer. (Citizen file)
Sunfest country music bash won’t be shining on B.C. in 2021

Annual Vancouver Island Festival cancelled due to COVID-19, along with Laketown Shakedown

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation elected chief councillor Moses Martin, who was also Chantel Moore’s grandfather, speaks to media in Port Alberni on Aug. 16, 2020, during a visit from NDP leader Jagmeet Singh following the police shooting of Chantel Moore. (Elena Rardon photo)
Mother of 2 shot by police in critical condition, says B.C. First Nation chief

Community ‘devastated’ by third member of 1,150-person Vancouver Island nation shot in less than a year

B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham promotes the government’s BuyBC food program in 2019. (B.C. government)
Money running out for fresh fruit, vegetables, milk in B.C. schools

‘Looking at ways to support this type of program,’ minister says

Most Read