Julia Austin, McNeilly Enterprises

Enhancing Capacity with Multi-purpose Facility
Grant Award: $6,000

The owners of McNeilly Enterprises are constructing a 20-foot by 25-foot multipurpose building and purchasing a commercial honey extractor and other equipment and supplies to facilitate processing and packaging of honey, post-harvest cold storage for blueberries and an area to construct and maintain an inventory of wooden hive components to sell to other beekeepers.

Much of the required infrastructure (separate meter, septic, water and electric) is already in place. The building will create agritourism opportunities and allow them to explore production of value-added food products. They sell their honey at three local restaurants and wholesale it to a nursery for resale.

The farm sold 100 gallons of blueberries in 2020 but lost half that year’s crop due to lack of labor and refrigerated storage. They plan to begin vending at local farmers markets and opening their blueberry fields for U-pick.

 

Cleveland County

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