Farmers, fishers, producers and processors in the Lower Mainland will have more opportunities to expand their product lines and market presence with the development of a new commercial food hub in Richmond.
“Many local food companies are keen to take their businesses to the next level, and food hubs help by providing access to processing space, equipment and business development supports,” said Pam Alexis, Minister of Agriculture and Food. “A new food hub in Richmond will build important connections within the community while strengthening economic and food security in the region.”
Over the next 18 months, the City of Richmond will undertake feasibility and business planning to identify gaps and develop a model to move the city toward a strong, connected and innovative food system. This work is expected to result in the development of a Richmond food hub that will support commercial opportunities and access for the region’s diverse agriculture and seafood sectors.
“Richmond has a thriving agricultural and seafood sector, key strengths in manufacturing and processing, as well as a vibrant restaurant and culinary scene,” said Malcolm Brodie, mayor, Richmond. “This initiative will build on these existing strengths to provide more opportunities for innovation, support for entrepreneurs and to create new jobs.”
Commercial food hubs provide clients shared access to food and beverage processing space and equipment. It also supports innovation and business and product development, as well as educational training related to food safety and processing. It helps create more demand for ingredients from local farmers and increase the number of people employed by the food industry.
The B.C. government is providing the City of Richmond with $1 million toward establishing the hub, which will be the 14th in the BC Food Hub Network.
Henry Yao, MLA for Richmond South Centre –
“Richmond has a rich agricultural history that continues to thrive today thanks to the farmers, producers and processors in the region who are proud to provide food on the tables for British Columbians all over B.C. The development of a food hub in Richmond will bring more opportunities for the agriculture and food businesses in the area by advancing innovation with top-of-the-line processing equipment and creating more local jobs while growing a resilient food system in B.C.”
Pamela Baxter, president, Small Scale Food Processor Association –
“Richmond needs more available kitchen space and related supports for budding food processors and is a perfect location for a new food hub. Food hubs provide not only equipment and space, but also education and training to make it easier for enthusiastic growers, fishers and producers to navigate food-safety requirements and other regulations. Tenants can learn about food safety, business, scaling up and all the behind-the-scenes requirements to succeed in a competitive environment.”
James Donaldson, CEO, BC Food and Beverage –
“The City of Richmond has such a thriving food ecosystem. It’s exciting to see the Ministry of Agriculture and Food make this significant investment that will support the many businesses there and create an environment that will allow new ones to grow and prosper.”
- The B.C. government is partnering with regional districts, municipalities, community organizations and post-secondary institutions to help develop food hubs in different regions of B.C.
- The BC Food Hub Network is reducing barriers for small and medium businesses while helping them grow and enter new markets.
- Commercial food hubs increase value-added processing opportunities for producers and processors and advance innovation in B.C.’s food and beverage processing sector.
- Each food hub is unique to its community and region, providing a diverse array of products and offering the best processing equipment to fit the needs of the farmers, fishers and producers in the area.
- To date, the B.C. government has invested $14.6 million in the BC Food Hub network.
For information about the BC Food Hub Network, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/foodhubsbc