We lead collaborative development projects, promote our products and values, and create opportunities to share knowledge and resources to solidify Lane County as a hub for diverse food and beverage companies.
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Food and Beverage Sector Strategy Goals:
- Develop shared resources to attract, retain and grow local businesses.
- Create positive awareness and recognition through coordinated branding efforts.
- Build a stronger workforce — aligning curriculum at local high schools and colleges; raise awareness of food and beverage careers.
- Smooth utility costs — increase awareness of utility assistance programs and utility costs.
- Streamline regulations and permitting.
- Increase collaboration across the industry.
Genesis of Project:
The Lane County Sector Strategy Team (LCSST) convened for the first time in November 2014. The team of regional workforce development, economic development, and city and business leaders is focused on economic and workforce development for Lane County, Oregon. The LCSST is responsible for making decisions together about how to better support critical industries in Lane County, including forming sector partnerships targeting specific industries.
Using local labor market data, the LCSST chose to focus attention first on the Tech Sector. Tech Sector Strategies was launched in 2015 led by Technology Association of Oregon and has achieved much success.
Sector Strategies has now turned it’s attention to the Food and Beverage leveraging the work of The Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce. An RFP went out Spring of 2017 for a entity to lead continued efforts. Micah Elconin of Season to Taste Consulting earned the project and beginning in July 2017 has taken on the role of Food And Beverage Sector Strategist. Elconin will lead the coordination of projects defined by industry leaders.
Industry Advisory Board:
- Jason Lafferty, CEO at SnoTemp
- Nigel Francisco, CFO at Ninkasi Brewing Company
- Chris Cameron, Sr. Director of Supply Chain at Attune Foods
- Whit Hemphill, Co-Owner at Wildtime Foods
- Marty Parisien, CEO at Singing Dog Vanilla
- Sat Bir Khalsa, Director of Global Community and HR Development at Yogi Tea
- Kim Gibson Clark, President and CEO at Luna and Larry’s Coconut Bliss
- Jessica Scarola, Owner of Elegant Elephant Baking Corp
- Ed Gerdes, Director of Farm Connections & Sourcing at Hummingbird Wholesale and Co-founder of Beau Delicious! International, LLC dba Cafe Yumm!
- Kim Johnson, Owner of Real Live Foods
- Jacob Sablosky, VP of Business Development at NuNaturals
- RaeJean Wilson, Senior Executive Vice President at GloryBee Foods
- Dan Vishny, Owner of Red Ape Cinnamon, and CFO at Wildcraft Cider Works
- Jessica Jones, Owner of The Queen’s Bounty
- Justin Freeman, Owner of Bagel Sphere and President of the Board at Oregon Tilth
- Sheryl Kesey Thompson, Director of Marketing at Springfield Creamery
- Raj Vable, Founder of Young Mountain Tea
- Doug Furlong, President at Happy Nibbles
- Bonnie Glass, Owner of Euphoria Chocolate Company
- Tyson Davies, Business Opportunity Analyst at Organically Grown Company
- John Boyle, VP of Sales and Merchandising at Market of Choice
- Jay Luikart, Plant Director of So Delicious Dairy Free in Springfield and YoCream in Portland at DanoneWave
- Beth Hjelm, Senior Director, Strategic Initiatives and Senior Instructor of Management at Lundquist College of Business
- Joe Maruschak, Director at RAIN Eugene and Managing Director at Coast to Crest Fund