ENC town holds groundbreaking for food processing plant

AYDEN, N.C. (WITN) – The Town of Ayden held a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday afternoon to take the first step toward establishing a food processing plant.

Community leaders and residents came out to celebrate the groundbreaking for the Eastern North Carolina Food Commercialization Center.

The goal of the center is to bring food processing services to farmers, food manufacturers, and entrepreneurs in nearby regions.

In December of 2021, the project got $4 million from the General Assembly to help bring the center to Pitt County.

North Carolina lawmaker Rep. Brian Farkas believes the plant will be great for Ayden and Eastern Carolina as a whole.

“It’s going to provide many first-time farmers who want to start canning and packaging or other folks who have to produce that, they want to start getting onto shelves,” Farkas said. “It’s going to give them that space to really start launching that business.”

Farkas also said the site is exciting because there is room for growth. “Ayden has a great location now that we’re just south of the new interstate 587 and the Ayden bypass which lands right here in the town of Ayden. This whole site is just right for growth and investment.”

The nonprofit ENC FCC plans to provide the services in order to make Eastern Carolina a competitive force in the food market.