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Dutchess County Grows Food & Beverage Businesses

Just 70 miles north of Manhattan, Dutchess County in New York’s Hudson Valley has become a prime location for food and beverage manufacturers.

“Our proximity to major markets along the Boston-Washington corridor, coupled with more than 1,700 farms and the presence of the world-renowned Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, has spawned a wealth of F&B companies,” said Sarah Lee, CEO of Think Dutchess Alliance for Business. “As a result, Dutchess County boasts a robust industry supply chain, including regional distributors, equipment dealers and warehouses, logistics service providers and more that empowers food and beverage manufacturers to thrive.”

Manufacturing Industry
EFCO Products has roots in Dutchess County, NY dating back to 1903. The Poughkeepsie-based company points to the region’s strong workforce and education system as reasons to operate in Dutchess County. (Photo: Courtesy Think Dutchess)

 

Case in point is Crepini, a specialty food company that makes Naked Crepes, Egg Wraps, and other products.

When the family business experienced explosive growth, Think Dutchess identified an ideal site at a business park in Fishkill, NY for the company to open a new, 35,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility, allowing the company to triple its capacity.

The company’s products are now sold in more than 6,000 stores nationwide.

Another family-owned company, EFCO Products, has roots in Dutchess County dating back to 1903. The Poughkeepsie-based company makes bakery fillings, mixes and concentrates, beverage bases and syrups, sauces and spreads, fruit and specialty toppings and other ingredients that are sold to wholesale bakeries, supermarkets, restaurant chains, and convenience stores around the world. The company points to the region’s strong workforce and education system, as well as access to a large population base and key ports, as competitive business reasons to operate in Dutchess County.

“Dutchess County boasts a robust industry supply chain, including regional distributors, equipment dealers and warehouses, logistics service providers and more that empowers food and beverage manufacturers to thrive.”

— Sarah Lee, CEO, Think Dutchess Alliance for Business

Smaller locally owned enterprises are also flourishing in Dutchess County, including Hudson Valley Cold Pressed Oils, which makes cold-pressed sunflower oil and other related products.

Jane Bakes focuses on all-natural, low-sugar ingredients for the distinctive cookies, Jaconde, and Bundt cakes the Fishkill bakeshop turns out. Bon Appetit raved about the company’s cookie flavors like Whiskey & Rye Chocolate Chip and Hazelnut & Dark Chocolate.

National and international accolades of Dutchess County food manufacturers do not stop there. Crown Maple has also garnered international acclaim for its 100% pure organic, Grade A maple syrup produced in Dover Plains, NY and Horseshoe Brand, maker of premium hot sauces and barbeque sauces in Rhinebeck, NY has gotten nods of approval from the likes of BuzzFeed, helping to drive steady growth.

A leader in New York’s craft beverage industry, Dutchess County breweries like Sloop Brewing Co. and Mill House Brewing Company are among more than 15 breweries in the county, along with numerous wineries like Millbrook Vineyards & Winery and Milea Estate Vineyard. The newest addition to the fast-growing beverage community is Asahi Shuzo International’s Dassai Blue sake brewery in Hyde Park—the first of its kind on the U.S. East Coast.

Dutchess County is also home to Harney & Sons, master tea blenders with an international reputation for offering more than 300 varieties of teas from classic to exotic blends. The company recently launched The Hemp Division, a line of all-natural, handcrafted CBD teas.

With the region’s strong agricultural roots, Hudson Valley Fresh, a consortium of 10 farms, delivers fresh milk, and other dairy products from farm to store in just three days.

“Dutchess County has all the right ingredients for food and beverage processors—a strategic location, skilled workforce, natural assets and a business-friendly climate,” Lee said. “We expect the industry to continue to grow here.”

Visit thinkdutchess.com for more information.

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