MEDP Receives Oregon Business Development Success Award
(MCMINNVILLE, OR) - On Monday, October 23, 2017, MEDP (McMinnville Economic Development Partnership) received the Oregon Economic Development Association's 2017 Business Development Success Award for the Organic Valley Project.
The Business Development Success award “recognizes innovative programs in business development.” This includes projects that involve recruiting new businesses to “create new jobs, expand the local tax base, and improve the community.” To receive the award MEDP had to demonstrate their use of economic development best practices and principles, as well as how strong relationships helped shape the project.
In 2017, Wisconsin based company Organic Valley, expanded their operation to McMinnville, Oregon with the purchase of the former Farmers Cooperative Creamery building. Since the purchase, Organic Valley has invested over $20 million into their new facility, converting the space from general to organic processing, and has plans to hire over 20 employees.
Upon choosing the location, the company also received a $350,000 Governor’s Strategic Reserve Fund Award to ensure the operation of the butter line at the new plant.
Organic Valley’s expansion into McMinnville supports MEDP’s 1,500 in 15 goal of fostering the creation of 1,500 new, family-wage jobs, in McMinnville by 2032, McMinnville’s 150th anniversary. Not only did the expansion help retain 9 jobs and add over 20 new jobs to the community, Organic Valley is also connected to 72 family-farms in Washington and Oregon.
At the company’s grand opening event, representatives stated that the “Oregon welcome” helped confirm their decision to come to Oregon. In a community that has a culture of cooperation, the company has already found a warm welcome in McMinnville.
The project was a coordination of the CROPP Organic Valley advance team, the current staff at Organic Valley - McMinnville, McMinnville Economic Development Partnership, Oregon Governor Kate Brown, Regional Solutions Coordinator James LaBar, Business Oregon Director Chris Harder, Business Oregon Deputy Director Chris Cummings, Business Oregon Regional Development Officer Dennie Houle, City of McMinnville Community Development Director Mike Bisset, Oregon Department of Agriculture, and McMinnville Water & Light.