16 October 2009
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Thanks to investments from the Government of Canada, the Province of Prince Edward Island, Cavendish Farms, and Holland College, the Culinary Institute of Canada today celebrated the official grand opening of Canada’s Smartest Kitchen, a state-of-the-art facility that combines culinary arts with the science of food to create marketable food products.
The Honorable Keith Ashfield, Minister of State for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) was joined by Premier Robert Ghiz, Mr. Robert Irving, President, Cavendish Farms Corporation, and Dr. Brian McMillan, President, Holland College.
“Our government is proud to partner with the province, Cavendish Farms, and Holland College in creating Canada’s Smartest Kitchen,” said Minister Ashfield. “The facility will provide excellent opportunities for the many businesses that will use its services. As well, this project supports Canada’s Economic Action plan to lay the foundations for long-term economic growth by investing in infrastructure at colleges and research facilities.”
Food processing is one of Canada’s largest industries, with Canadian consumers purchasing more than $60 billion annually in processed food. Canada’s Smartest Kitchen facilitates collaborative work between chefs, scientists and industry to cater to these changing tastes and capitalize on this booming market.
Both ACOA and the Province of PEI have contributed $1.2 million each in the development of Canada’s Smartest Kitchen. Cavendish Farms has invested $1 million and Holland College has contributed $750,000 towards the project.
“The Government of Prince Edward Island continues to develop strong partnerships with post secondary institutions such as Holland College in an effort to promote innovation,” said Premier Robert Ghiz. “Canada’s Smartest Kitchen is the result a unique partnership that will lead to the creation of value-added food products that will be sold at home and around the world to benefit our primary sectors of agriculture and fishing. We are pleased to see this type of research and development in the food processing industry taking place in Prince Edward Island."
The approximately 12,000-square foot facility that houses Canada's Smartest Kitchen is located at Holland College's Tourism and Culinary Centre in downtown Charlottetown. The new Cavendish Farms Culinary Creation Centre is located on the lower level of the facility. This centre will solely be used for researching, developing and testing products for the company's expansive food product line.
“This new facility is a great example of a win-win collaboration with the Culinary Institute of Canada, which is recognized as one of Canada’s best known and most successful culinary training schools” says Cavendish Farms’ President Robert K Irving. “We’ll have access to the college's talented research chefs and their staff, and this partnership will help Cavendish meet customer demand for new and innovative food solutions.”
Also attending the opening was local company Future Seafoods Inc., who worked with the Culinary Institute using Canada’s Smartest Kitchen to develop a value-added shellfish product for the food service industry and retail market.
“Our Oyster Rockyfella is a ready-to-serve product developed through shared efforts by Future Seafoods and the Culinary Institute,” stated Ted Boutillier, Vice President of Future Seafoods Inc. “I am so impressed by the capabilities of the staff at Canada’s Smartest Kitchen. They took our idea and created a world class product.”
Future Seafoods Inc. received more than $127,000 in funding for product development and marketing, a combined investment from ACOA, and the Province of Prince Edward Island.
For Holland College president, Dr. Brian McMillan, the partnership is yet another example of the college's leadership in culinary arts, and research and development.
"The major benefit for us is that we will be working directly with industry on innovative yet practical product development ideas for the food service industry. Partnering with industry is fundamental to our philosophy of training, and to our vision for moving forward," said Dr. McMillan.
The Culinary Institute of Canada, located at Holland College's Tourism and Culinary Centre, has been training aspiring chefs since 1983 and is regarded by many as the premiere culinary school in Canada.
FOR BROADCAST USE:
ACOA Minister Keith Ashfield, Premier Robert Ghiz, Robert Irving, President of Cavendish Farms Corp., and Dr. Brian McMillan, President of Holland College, were at the Tourism and Culinary Centre in downtown Charlottetown today to officiate the grand opening of Canada’s Smartest Kitchen. This $4 million facility was funded under a joint federal, provincial and private sector contribution. Also announced was the investment of over $127,000 to Future Seafoods Inc., who used Canada’s Smartest Kitchen to develop a value- added shellfish product.
ACOA PEI & Tourism
PEI Business Development