The Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Heather Humphreys, TD, has announced that the “An Chistin“, the proposed Food Hub in Castlerea, has been allocated €100,000.
The funding for the proposed Food Hub in Castlerea comes from the REDZ (Rural Economic Development Zone) initiative, which aims to stimulate economic development in rural towns and their hinterlands. The project is one of 41 projects nationwide, and the only one in Roscommon, to benefit from the €5.3 million scheme.
Today’s news is a further boost to “An Chistin”. In recent weeks Roscommon County Council announced that it had set aside €500,000 towards the project in it’s 2017 Budget.
“An Chistin” will be a community led (by Enterprise Castlerea) food production enterprise and education hub. It will serve as a training facility for 16 would-be Chefs and a facility where food entrepreneurs can bring a product from idea stage right through to production stage, without incurring significant start-up costs.
In welcoming the news Minister Denis Naughten, who will officially launch “An Chistin” next month said “This funding is extremely welcome as the development of a Food Hub in Castlerea is vitally important not just to support local employment but also to help local food companies and food entrepreneurs to convert good ideas into viable businesses. In this way they will initially be able to provide employment for themselves while in the medium term going on to create significant employment in the West Roscommon area. stated Minister Naughten.
“A facility such as this can help to leverage research and innovation capability from the likes of Athlone IT and Sligo IT and translate that into support for local job creation.”
Minister Naughten added: “I would like to compliment the work that has been done by the local committee, Roscommon County Council, Roscommon LEADER Partnership and the Local Enterprise Office to date in progressing this vital project and I am looking forward to officially launching the Food Hub in Castlerea on 9th December.”
Michael Fitzmaurice TD said that the money for “An Chistin” is very welcome and for a fantastic project which was recently officially launched. He also welcomed funding for other projects in the region “Glenamaddy will share €100,000 with four other areas in Galway to build a capacity building programme along with An Ceathru Rua, Galway Rural, Oranmore and Gort while there is €96,000o for Greenways and Blueways in Mullingar and Athlone. This funding is very welcome and it will be an aid to the creation of local jobs and will help with local rural development projects”