June 17, 2024

CPS

Travel Adventure

Food hubs in BC – Province of British Columbia

5 min read

Through the BC Food Hub Network, there are currently 13 regional food processing and innovation hubs (‘food hubs’) operating or under development in B.C.

Food hub commodity map

Commissary Connect – Vancouver, opened in 2019
Commissary Connect operates multiple commercial kitchens in the Lower Mainland. Their Vancouver location on Laurel Street was the original pilot and demonstration site for the BC Food Hub Network, offering 24/7 HACCP-ready kitchen access, a test kitchen, and office spaces. Their patented technology automates shared-use kitchen operations, enabling equipment scheduling and pay-per-use functionality. This technology is licensable, and Commissary Connect provides consulting for building and running shared-use kitchens. View website for more information.

Plenty & Grace – Surrey, opened in 2021
Plenty & Grace Food Hub & Innovation Centre, located in South Surrey, provides a 5,000 sq. ft. shared-use HACCP-ready food production facility focused on the processing of local B.C. fruits, vegetables, tree nuts and herbs for value-added product production. The shared use facility and custom build workstations have been designed for shared workflow and lean manufacturing practices.  In addition, Plenty & Grace offers co-packing, B.C. ingredient sourcing, and distribution. View website for more information.

The Dock+  – Port Alberni, opened in 2021
The Dock+ is owned by the Port Alberni Port Authority at Fishermen’s Harbour. Comprised of a 1,254 sq. ft. VIHA-permitted commercial kitchen, ice plant, and cold storage, the 17,000 sq ft. shared-use HACCP-ready production facility offers start-ups and small businesses an environment of growth, development, and collaboration. View website for more information.

Kootenay Farms Food Hub and Innovation Centre – Creston, opened in 2021
Kootenay Farms Food Hub Innovation Centre, operated by the Field Forward Society, is a HACCP-ready shared-use commercial processing facility that specializes in working with producers of beverages, freeze dried products, fruit & vegetable products, and food service. The hub features a commercial kitchen, food processing equipment, packaging and labeling equipment, dry and cold storage, and bag-in-box packaging. View website for more information.

Zest Commercial Food Hub – Salmon Arm, opened in 2021
Zest Commercial Food Hub Zest Commercial Food Hub is an initiative of the Salmon Arm Economic Development Society (SAEDS) that provides two shared-use processing spaces containing specialized food processing equipment like a blast freezer, filling machine, dehydrator, steam kettles and more. The shared kitchens offer a cost-effective solution for food businesses to create their products, while also fostering a sense of community and collaboration. Additionally, Zest has seven private tenant spaces which provide flexibility for businesses that require more dedicated and customized production areas. The combination of shared and private spaces allows the Zest Commercial Food Hub to accommodate a range of businesses at different stages of growth, helping to boost the local food industry and economic growth. View website for more information.

Fraser Valley Artisans Food Hub – Abbotsford, opened in 2022
Fraser Valley Artisans Food Hub in Abbotsford offers a shared-use commercial kitchen space that is designed to help local food producers add value to their products. The hub features stoves, ovens, deep fryers, dough sheeter, freeze dryers, tilt kettle, large pressure cooker, walk in cooler and freezer, and much more. They provide access to equipment and resources that individual businesses may not be able to afford on their own through a monthly membership plan. View the website for more information.

The Stir – Kamloops, opened in 2022
The Stir is led by the Kamloops Food Policy Council and provides HACCP-ready commercial kitchen rentals, business mentorship, and support to help local food entrepreneurs start and scale-up their business to reach a wider market. The Stir specializes in canning and dehydration, and offers specialty food processing and packaging equipment that is also suitable for bakers, caterers and food trucks. Stir Makers can rent dry and cold storage, warehouse space, as well as a pop-up retail storefront and rentable indoor and outdoor event space right on the Thompson River. View website for more information.

Sprout Kitchen – Quesnel, opened in 2022
Sprout Kitchen is an initiative of the City of Quesnel that serves the North Cariboo region. Sprout Kitchen offers new and established food businesses and community groups access to shared processing infrastructure including processing and testing equipment, food business advisory services, product development services, analytic services, applied research opportunities, and education and training related to food processing and food safety. View website for more information.

Kitchen Connect – Victoria, opened in 2023
Kitchen Connect is an initiative of the Victoria Community Food Hub Society and integrates with the South Island FarmHub and The Mustard Seed to offer training, incubation, kitchens, and storage. Kitchen Connect is a HACCP-ready kitchen that features dry and refrigerated storage, high volume and light processing and pasteurizing lines, teaching and training spaces, and much more. View website for more information.

Cowichan Farm & Food Hub – Cowichan Valley (In Development)
The Cowichan Farm & Food Hub, led by the Cowichan Green Community Society, will be a 4,800 sq. ft. HACCP-ready facility with a shared-use kitchen, training room office, cold storage, warehouse, and distribution centre located in Duncan. A full list of amenities will be announced soon. View website for more information.

Boundary Food Hub – Rock Creek and Greenwood (In Development)
The Boundary Food Hub is a suite of facilities and services that will enable food producers and processors to reach commercial, retail, and institutional markets both inside and outside the Boundary region. In addition to currently offering reefer trailers for rent, a meat processing facility is under development in the Rock Creek area. With a strong focus on transportation, the Boundary Food Hub is collaborating with southern interior organizations to roll out a Food Map app that will enable food businesses to connect with transportation business to move food to markets.

Okanagan Food and Innovation Hub – Summerland (In Development)
The Okanagan Food and Innovation Hub (OFIH) is a project of the District of Summerland and Community Futures Okanagan-Similkameen that is dedicated to growing the local agri-food economy by encouraging value-added processing and support services. The project will connect local farmers and entrepreneurs to right resources for growth, successful commercialization, and scaling-up by providing a HACCP-ready commercial kitchen with specialized equipment and integrated services. View website for more information.

Richmond Food Hub – Richmond (In Development)
The Richmond Food Hub is an initiative of the City of Richmond to support the thriving agriculture and seafood sector, key strengths in manufacturing and processing as well as the vibrant restaurant and culinary scene.

Previously funded

Centre for Seafood – Bowser, Vancouver Island, opened in 2021. Key programs transitioned in April 2024

The Centre for Seafood Innovation (CSI) played an important role in supporting innovation among seafood entrepreneurs while providing valuable experiential learning opportunities to post-secondary students. Its successful initiatives are continued by industry, First Nations, and Vancouver Island University (VIU).

Food hub feasibility study and business planning projects

A total of $732,000 in funding under the BC Food Hub Network program was provided to organizations across the province for the completion of food hub feasibility study and business planning projects:

  1. Capital Region Food and Agriculture Initiatives Roundtable, Victoria
  2. City of Quesnel, Quesnel
  3. City of Salmon Arm, Shuswap Region
  4. Columbia Basin Trust, Columbia Basin
  5. District of Summerland, Summerland
  6. Good to Grow Natural Products Coaching (partnering with the British Columbia Institute of Technology), North Vancouver
  7. Kamloops Food Policy Council, Kamloops
  8. North Island College, Courtenay
  9. Upper Skeena Development Centre Society, Hazelton
  10. Vancouver Island University, Deep Bay/Nanaimo
  11. Comox Valley Food Hub, Comox
  12. Peace River Grain and Oilseed Food Hub, Peace Region
  13. Salt Spring Island Farmland Trust Society, Salt Spring Island
  14. Central Saanich Feasibility Study, Central Saanich
  15. District of Saanich Feasibility Study, Saanich
  16. Tea Creek Food Hub, Kitwanga

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