Objective & Facility Uses

The Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC) identified an opportunity to perform a feasibility study to determine the viability of a certified, commercial, shared-use Agricultural Enterprise Center located in the Central Shenandoah Valley. In March 2020, the CSPDC issued a request for proposal (RFP) for a consultant to undertake a feasibility study. New Venture Advisors (NVA) was selected and began work on this project in July 2020.

Goal and Vision:

The goal of the project is to support business diversification and growth in the Shenandoah Valley through value-added products and the delivery of agricultural goods and products to new markets, specifically supporting local food entrepreneurs and farmers. The vision of the Agricultural Enterprise Center is to bring a multi-use facility to the region that can help local growers and producers expand their market area, bridge the market gap, and pool together products to meet market demands.

Project Objective:

The objective of this feasibility study is to determine an optimal operating model for this potential facility based on the needs of in-region stakeholders (i.e., farmers, food businesses, and buyers). The study was organized into the following phased approach:










Potential Uses:

Commercial kitchen, food lab/testing kitchen, cold storage space (freezer/cooler), training space for smart-ag classes and seminars, packaging and distribution operations, and business planning resources.

Those that ultimately will benefit from this project include:

  • Growers and producers desiring to distribute in larger markets through a food hub;
  • Business start-ups seeking affordable access to certified commercial facilities;
  • Existing small-scale food processors that want to test recipes and products to become business enterprises;
  • Growers and producers seeking packaging solutions and services;
  • Growers and entrepreneurs seeking food regulatory training and business support;
  • Buyers seeking a clear and reliable way to purchase local products;
  • Localities, particularly rural communities, wanting to broaden their tax base and encourage local jobs.