The West Michigan Food Processing Association, in partnership with the Community Foundation for Muskegon County, Muskegon Community College, and Greater Muskegon Economic Development (GMED) have developed the Food, Agriculture, Research and Manufacturing (FARM) business accelerator to support the growth of West Michigan’s food processing sector. FARM is an ideal food processing facility for Stage I or Stage II food companies, as well as mature food processors looking for offsite test manufacturing for new products.
West Michigan is home to several early-stage kitchen incubators such as Kitchen 242 in Muskegon and the Starting Block in Hart. With the completion of FARM, successful entrepreneurs can move from these or other early-stage incubators to take the next step in growing their business to full commercialization. FARM provides food-grade industrial space with individual suites and offers flexible lease and space options. In addition to serving as a one-stop shop for resources to take new food innovations to commercialization, FARM can serve as a catalyst to bring venture capital funds to West Michigan food entrepreneurs.
The facility includes 8,000 square feet of flexible manufacturing space for commercial grade fruit and vegetable processing, and complies with all US Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration requirements. Among the facility’s features are loading docks, refrigeration/freezers, energy efficiency, and waste and water handling. Tenants are expected to furnish their own processing equipment with a goal to move to their own facility as they grow. Located on the campus of Muskegon Community College with its affiliation with Michigan State University’s (MSU) food processing certificate and degree programs, the facility will contribute to research, education, and economic development in the West Michigan region. It also has space for the MSU Mobile Processing Lab. The lab mirrors what students will see in the industry once they graduate, but on a smaller scale. The trailer lab was built to demonstrate the need for food grade processing, as well as meeting the demands of the curriculum for the certificate program. The lab is also used to introduce high school students to food processing as a potential career.
We are actively seeking tenants. Please contact Clarence Rudat for more details and information.