Food Manufacturing Task Force

Economic Opportunity for North Carolina

North Carolina has underused manufacturing capacity, particularly in the rural areas. Food ingredients, and their conversion to value-added products, represent an opportunity to put this capacity to use, creating a stronger North Carolina manufacturing sector.

In 2014, the General Assembly commissioned an economic feasibility study to evaluate food manufacturing’s potential in North Carolina. The study predicted that in less than 10 years, food manufacturing could contribute an additional 38,000 jobs and $10.3 billion boost to the state income annually, if key recommendations were realized.

But to leverage North Carolina’s agricultural diversity and overcome current market barriers, the state needs supportive infrastructure and programs.

A student and a faculty member showing off a juice product in a grocery store based off of NC State research.

Growing and Manufacturing Local

While Kendra Stallings was working on her Food Science master's degree at NC State, Cottle Farms, a muscadine grape and berry producer called for help in developing a smoothie receipe. Together, they developed the JuVn8 brand now found in grocery stores across the southeasern U.S.

Task Force Charge

By Executive Order No. 73 on April 9, 2015, Governor McCrory established the North Carolina Food Manufacturing Task Force (Task Force) with 35 thought leaders representing various aspects of North Carolina’s food system. The Governor charged the Task Force to focus on:

  1. Develop a strategic business plan to leverage existing activities in food processing and manufacturing;
  2. Establish a statewide food processing and manufacturing organization, directory and database;
  3. Create a plan to develop a proactive industrial recruitment campaign for new business development;
  4. Plan to foster the growth of food manufacturing entrepreneurial endeavors, enhance development of innovative food products and processes, and provide sector-specific regulatory training and outreach.

Task Force Key Recommendations

The North Carolina Food Manufacturing Task Force submitted following recommendations to address the needs in developing North Carolina’s food manufacturing industry and highlighting what our state has to offer new and existing companies.

  • Establish a Statewide Interdisciplinary and Interagency N.C. Food Manufacturing Leadership Team
  • Invest in Two Interagency Statewide Leadership Positions

Position 1: Science, Technology and Policy Director for the Food Manufacturing Industry

Position 2: Business Development Manager for the Food Manufacturing Industry


Download Task Force Final Report