UBC Undergraduate Research

UBC Farm Pilot Food Processing Center Cheng, Andrea; Lin, Gigi; Baker-French, Jay; Brown, Kayla; Killoran, Leanna


The UBC Farm Pilot Food Processing Centre project as part of the greater UBC Food Systems Project in LFS 450 aims to: facilitate teaching and research on food processing and its connections to the broader food system; enhance UBC Farm’s income and program diversity through value-adding; and enhance awareness of the various components of a sustainable food system at UBC within the context of the Lower Fraser Valley regional food system. With support from community partner UBC Climate Action Plan, The Center for Sustainable Food Systems at the UBC Farm has identified the need to include a food processing center as a component of the future Farm Centre, which is in early stages of the design process. The research conducted by our group of UBC students focuses on 4 key research components: academic connections, regulations review, equipment needs, and a product market analysis. The methods for conducting the research in this report followed ethical research standards and included the creation of a survey, internet searches, interviews conducted via email, telephone and in-person, market research as well as informal discussion with community partners. All data was collected and shared via Google documents within the group members. Important results of this research are summarized in easy to follow tables. The main results contained within this report suggest a high level of interest from the Faculty of Land & Food Systems, specifically within the Food, Nutrition and Health program, with several courses making direct connections to the processing facility. The regulations required to run the facility are provided by Vancouver Coastal Health, who provide guidelines and inspection for the following: formulation of product, product ingredients, process of manufacture, cooking, holding, and storage time, and product labeling (VCH, 2012). A variety of products are of interest to both the Faculty and stakeholders, however to ensure economic viability of the processing centre, only products that add value should be produced using UBC Farm produce. Connections to local BC growers associations should be made for community building as well as produce procurement. Based on the research our group recommends that a broader part of the UBC community be involved beyond the FNH programs and the LFS Faculty. For future phases of this scenario, we recommend that more work be done with community partner Liska Richer and the UBC Climate Action Plan. Another future scenario could involve LFS 450 students developing a product line in collaboration with Food and Resource Economics students or students from the Sauder School of Business to further research break-even points. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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