Prices Fork, VA — After several years of planning and construction, Millstone Kitchen will open for entrepreneurial use in July 2019. The project is a collaborative planning effort between public and private partners under the direction of Beans and Rice, Inc. The kitchen, located in the Old School Center, seeks to support the work of food businesses and entrepreneurs in the New River Valley by providing start-up services as well as commercial kitchen space to refine their product, test recipes, scale up, and distribute their products. The kitchen will also serve as a commissary for local food trucks.
The Millstone Kitchen is now accepting applications from entrepreneurs who wish to use the kitchen to support their start-ups and bring their products to a wider range of consumers who appreciate local food and local business.
The kitchen is also accepting donations from community members who wish to support its mission.
The Millstone Kitchen, named to honor the history of millstone manufacturing in the Prices Fork community, is part of a three-phase development plan involving the revitalization of the Old Prices Fork Elementary School. The effort seeks to build a multi-function facility that includes residential apartments, a restaurant, a brewery, and the Millstone Kitchen. Local entrepreneurs, farmers, and community members have guided the project in every step of development in order to determine how best to serve the Prices Fork community, Montgomery County, and the broader New River Valley. The collaborative development process has resulted in a flexible, dynamic space filled with everything needed to launch a food business in the New River Valley.
Millstone Kitchen is a commercially-licensed kitchen space food entrepreneurs can rent by the hour to ready their product for sale or test new recipes, offering the freedom to explore new markets and customers without the risk of opening their own storefronts. The Kitchen can also serve as a commissary space for local food trucks, offering prep and storage spaces as well as disposal services.
Additionally, Millstone Kitchen offers business support services and seeks to cultivate a supportive community of new entrepreneurs based at the Kitchen. Kitchen users will have access to professionals who can assist with business plan development, marketing, food safety regulations, and sourcing ingredients.
Some of the equipment Millstone Kitchen offers includes:
Walk-in cooler and freezer, ranges, convection ovens, tilting skillet, steam-jacketed kettle, dehydrator, commercial mixers, commercial food processors, and more!
Applications are available for entrepreneurs who are looking for support in their start-ups and would like to receive that support through the Millstone Kitchen.
The Millstone Kitchen has received funding from the Appalachian Regional Commission, Vibrant Communities Initiative, and USDA Rural Business Development Grant Program for construction and equipment and seeks donations from community members for support of general operations. Donations can be made on our website (millstonekitchen.org).
Those with a passion for local food are invited to sign up for the Millstone email list on our website and follow our facebook page to receive news about the grand opening, kitchen tours, and events. The grand opening will precede a business competition hosted by the Millstone Kitchen in August, which will include intensive business planning support and award $10k in start-up funds to winning businesses.
Beans and Rice, Inc. is a community economic development organization that works to improve the economic well-being of low-to-moderate income families through: hunger relief; afterschool programs which raise academic achievement and develop pro-social skills; micro-business development programs that create jobs; and savings programs that help families purchase their first home and help children save funds for school.