A number of local food producers and other interested parties attended the recent Processing, Aggregation and Distribution (PAD) Producer Meeting, hosted by the Greenbrier Valley Local Foods Initiative. The purpose of the meeting was to gather feedback about the feasibility of a Greenbrier Valley PAD facility from the local community. “It is very encouraging that the GVLFI is thinking of the farmers and consumers in this way,” stated Rhonda Dortch, a local farmer who attended the meeting.
The GVLFI, along with the Value Chain Cluster Initiative (VC2) and the Central Appalachian Network (CAN), has retained Tom Shepstone, of Shepstone Management Company, to undertake a feasibility study for this PAD project. The PAD would provide aggregation, light processing and distribution of produce grown within the Greenbrier Valley. A PAD can enable the small-scale growers in the region to join together to serve larger buyers such as local schools, hospitals and other institutions, which will increase local economic viability.
Food producers, buyers and others interested in learning about the PAD feasibility study may access the GVLFI website (www.greenbriervalley.org) or GVLFI Facebook page for updated information about the PAD project.
The GVLFI, an initiative of the Greenbrier Valley Economic Development Corporation, continues its work developing the local food economy within the Greenbrier Valley of West Virginia. A primary focus of the GVLFI is developing the local infrastructure necessary to enable Greenbrier Valley produce growers to expand their production capacity and earning potential. It is the intention of the GLVFI to include and support Greenbrier Valley producers, consumers, and others who are interested in developing local foods and agriculture.