New York Wine and Culinary Center and Foodlink are among recipients of cash from Albany

CANANDAIGUA — A number of local businesses and organizations will get a boost this year from $1 million in state dollars earmarked for projects, seven of which are in the Finger Lakes and Southern Tier regions.

They include $250,000 for the New York Wine and Culinary Center to help in its promotion of local food and beverages and for renovations to the building at 800 S. Main St. The New York Wine and Grape Foundation, headquartered at the center, will receive $200,000 for the NY Drinks NY program — a promotional effort showcasing New York’s wine and grape industries.

The funding, approved by the Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority, will also aid research projects for malting barley to advance the state’s craft beverage industry.

Research funds of $260,000 will go to Cornell University’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, where Kathryn J. Boor, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, stated the funds are a “win for New York farmers and brewers and the consumers.”

Boor said brewers need the “freshest, highest quality ingredients for their products, and they turn to New York farmers for the raw materials they need to innovate and thrive.” Farmers “rely on Cornell research to improve the resiliency of the crops that fuel the craft brewing industry,” she added. 

Cornell Agriculture and Food Technology Park (The Technology Farm) will receive $84,527. The money will be used to expand and renovate space at the Geneva facility — to increase capacity and efficiency of the Technology Farm’s operations.

Other winners for the state dollars are Foodlink, a regional hub that provides food to food pantries across upstate and the Rochester region. Foodlink will receive $200,000 to help with renovations and to buy machinery and equipment.

Tucked in the package from Albany is also $37,323 for Western NY Maple Producers. The money is for training and to purchase equipment to test new products.

“We appreciate this funding that will allow New York’s maple producers to continue their tradition of innovation with the creation of new products,” stated Lyle Merle, treasurer of the WNY Maple Producers. “This grant for training and equipment will also ensure we are able to keep making high-quality products for consumers.”

A list of funding and projects approved by the Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority Board of Directors in 2017:

Cornell University’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station — $260,000, to support the continuation of a multi-year research plan focused on malting barley in New York State to advance the state’s craft beverage industry.

New York Wine and Culinary Center — $250,000, for promotion of local food and beverages and facility renovations.

New York Wine and Grape Foundation — $200,000, to support the NY Drinks NY program to promote New York’s wine and grape industries.

Foodlink — $200,000, to purchase machinery and equipment and make renovations that will enhance value-added processing operations at the regional food hub

Cornell Agriculture and Food Technology Park Corporation (The Technology Farm) — $84,527, to expand and renovate space at the facility to increase capacity and efficiency of the Technology Farm’s operations.

Northeastern Juice Cooperative — $50,000, to develop a business plan, including marketing analysis and food safety certifications, for an apple juice processing facility.

Western NY Maple Producers — $37,323: for training and to purchase equipment to test processes for new products.