CDC to Celebrate 15th Anniversary

The Recorder, November 16, 2016, by Richie Davis

Real Pickles, Hillside Pizza and drinks from Artisan Beverage Cooperative will be among the “alumni” treats served at a 15th anniversary celebration planned at the Western Massachusetts Food Processing Center on Friday.

So will plum-lavender jam and blackberry raspberry lime jam from a new line of Kringle Farm Table products cooked up by Elizabeth Walsh, a line cook at the Bernardston restaurant.

Friday’s celebration, open to the public from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Franklin County Communty Development Corp. Venture Center at 324 Wells St., will celebrate the commercial kitchen, where 30 food businesses make a variety of products and Artisan Beverage, Real Pickles and Hillside Pizza got their start.

“We have a lot to celebrate,” said CDC Executive Director John Waite, whose organization is also marking its 37th anniversary. “Over 300 food businesses have cooked up delicious products over the past 15 years since the Western Mass. Food Processing Center opened, and there are many more to come.”

Walsh, who originated the idea for the locally sourced Kringle Farm Table products, including a butternut vanilla bean spread, onion jam and apple butter that will be launched in the weeks ahead, plans to be among the farmers and food makers on hand.

“All in all, there are 65 recipes I put together,” she said of the products, which are served on dishes at the restaurant as well as being sold at Kringle Candle’s Country Barn store. Made from produce grown at Dancing Bear Farm, Pine Hill Orchards and other local growers, the products are a way of showing people how the restaurant’s chefs can serve with flair local agricultural products for home use.

As the CDC’s commercial kitchen gets ready to begin building its new 2,600-foot freezer to ramp up capacity for processing local agricultural products, Friday’s event will give people an opportunity to tour the center and see Artisan Beverage Cooperative’s production area and new tasting room.

You can reach Richie Davis at or 413-772-0261, Ext. 269