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New manufacturing jobs coming to Kootenays

CANADA, April 19 - New support for manufacturing businesses in the Kootenays will create jobs, promote the development of made-in-B.C. products and strengthen local economies and communities.                                                                               

“We’re investing in local manufacturers to help them expand and create the family-supporting jobs that are a crucial part of the blueprint for thriving communities,” said Brenda Bailey, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation. “Taking action to support the manufacturing sector’s growth helps us build resilient local communities throughout our province.”

Through the BC Manufacturing Jobs Fund (BCMJF), the Government of B.C. is investing as much as $1.2 million in three projects in the region that will see local businesses grow and create new jobs, including:

  • Kimberley – Naera Enterprises Inc. owns Stoke Juice, which manufactures organic cold-pressed juice using B.C.-grown imperfect fruit and vegetables that can’t be sold in stores, reducing food waste. They are receiving as much as $618,000 to construct a manufacturing facility that will enable them to double production, access new markets, offer cold storage and transportation for other local producers, and create 34 jobs.
  • Invermere – Kicking Horse Coffee Co. Ltd. specializes in roasting, packaging and retailing coffee throughout North America and is the largest organic fair-trade coffee roaster in Canada. They are receiving as much as $330,000 to purchase new equipment that will increase production, efficiency and the automation of their manufacturing, allowing them to add a new product while creating five jobs.  
  • Harrop – Harrop-Procter Community Cooperative is a co-operative that manages public forests and runs a sawmill where they process wood products. They will be receiving as much as $215,000 to upgrade the mill by replacing equipment to improve efficiency and adapt to smaller diameter logs, while creating three jobs.

“There is incredible innovation happening in every corner of our province, and so much of that takes place in locally owned manufacturing businesses,” said Roly Russell, Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Development. “Supporting homegrown companies to grow their businesses is all about creating good, sustainable jobs and thriving communities.”

The Province is taking action through the StrongerBC Economic Plan to build a strong and sustainable economy through clean and inclusive growth. Supporting local manufacturing sectors helps build a more innovative economy for people, businesses and communities throughout B.C.

Quotes:

Brittny Anderson, MLA for Nelson-Creston –

“Support for this project will help retool the Harrop-Proctor mill, strengthening a cleaner economy right here at home. Investments toward made-in-B.C. manufacturing are critical to creating more diverse and resilient local jobs.”

Alistair Laing, co-owner, Stoke Juice –

“This funding will be impactful in both the Kimberley community and the Kootenays by enabling us to expand employment, production capacity and distribution. We team up with many other craft producers in B.C. to help get their products to market using our delivery services, meaning funding that helps grow Stoke Juice helps all our partner businesses, too.”

Hentie Pretorius, vice-president of operations, Kicking Horse Coffee Co. Ltd. –

“This funding enables us to acquire state-of-the-art machinery that enhances the production capacity and efficiency of our roasting facility in Invermere, while extending the reach of our fair-trade and organic coffee beans to more customers across Canada. This investment also sustains our commitment to supporting and investing in our employees and community, and the surrounding Columbia Valley and East Kootenay regions.”

Bill Macpherson, president, Harrop-Procter Community Cooperative –

“The Harrop-Procter Community Cooperative is most appreciative of funding support provided by the BC Manufacturing Jobs Fund. Their financial assistance enables us to complete an ongoing revitalization of our milling division, Harrop Procter Forest Products, resulting in improved efficiencies, enhanced waste utilization capacity and, most importantly, continued and increased local employment.”

Quick Facts:

  • The BCMJF supports high-value industrial and manufacturing capital projects in all sectors that will create and protect well-paying jobs.
  • The BCMJF has committed as much as $89.2 million to B.C.’s manufacturing sector, supporting 77 organizations to expand and grow.
  • Funds committed to date through BCMJF will help create more than 1,000 new jobs and protect nearly 2,000 existing manufacturing jobs throughout B.C., more than 2,500 of which are in the forest sector.

Learn More:

To learn about the BC Manufacturing Jobs Fund, visit: http://gov.bc.ca/ManufacturingJobsFund   

To learn about the StrongerBC Economic Plan, visit: https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/plan

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