Pavilion, NY—New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo last Friday announced $2 million in state funding to support the construction of a new 30,000-square-foot WNY Cheese Enterprise, LLC, facility in Livingston county, NY.

The $49.7 million production facility will be part of a collaboration between Craig’s Station Ventures, Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) and Denmark-based Arla Foods. The plant is projected to produce approximately 15 million pounds of cheese annually.

The new agriculture collaboration taking place at the cheese plant will include DFA managing operations and holding a controlling stake in the venture. Arla Foods will have a 20 percent stake in the facility and will market cheese produced at the plant.

Craig’s Station Creamery, a collaboration between DFA and Craig’s Station Ventures — a partnership of eight Livingston and Wyoming county dairy farms — will hold the remaining stake in the enterprise.

Construction of the new facility is underway and is expected to be completed by the end of 2017.

“Today’s mom has a lot to worry about in her daily life. By providing her with the Cheddar cheese produced...we give her one less thing to fret about, thus making her life just a little bit easier.”

Donald Stohrer, Jr., Arla US

“As a lifelong resident of this area and 30-year veteran of the dairy business, it’s a real honor to be a part of developing this new production facility,” said Brian Paris, general manager of Craig’s Station Creamery, Pavilion, NY. “We have a tremendous opportunity to not only positively impact the dairy farmers in this area, but also the local community.”

“We are extremely excited and proud to partner with DFA in this venture, as it aligns perfectly with what today’s consumer is looking for: great-tasting, clean label products from a trusted, sustainable and traceable source,” said Donald Stohrer, Jr., CEO, Arla US.

“Today’s mom has a lot to worry about in her daily life,” Stohrer continued. “By providing her with the Cheddar cheese produced through out partnership with DFA, we give her one less thing to fret about, thus making her life just a little bit easier.”

“The main drivers for this project are even stronger today than they were over two years ago when we opened the creamery,” said Chris Noble, vice president of Noblehurst Farms and partner in Craig’s Station Ventures. “Consumers want to know who produces their food, and they want to know that it was produced in a sustainable way. We thought the timing was right to bring that same message into a high-quality Cheddar cheese.”

Empire State Development will provide more than $2 million in funding to support the $49.7 million project, including a $1.3 million Upstate Revitalization Initiative Capital Grant. Also, up to $700,000 will be awarded in performance-based Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits in return for 30 new jobs.

The project is also made possible by a $506,000 Community Development Block Grant from New York State Homes and Community Renewal, which was awarded to Livingston county in western New York.

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