Natural Products Manufacturing Facility
GROWING BUSINESSES IN THE NATURAL PRODUCTS INDUSTRY
The new Natural Products Manufacturing Facility at Blue Ridge Food Ventures is now in operation. This shared-use facility, the first in the U.S., is the only facility of its kind in the country where entrepreneurs can find services and equipment to manufacture and market their own dietary supplements and personal care products from medicinal herbs and natural ingredients
BUSINESS IS BLOOMING IN WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA
WNC is one of most biologically diverse areas of the world. Rich in traditions using plant-based remedies for health and healing, it’s also the ideal location for entrepreneurs and companies interested in the rapidly growing natural products industry. Read about a WNC entrepreneur who is using our facility to produce organic skin salve HERE.
THE SEEDS FOR SUCCESS ARE HERE
The natural products industry is ripe with opportunity. From ginseng to goldenseal, the market for herbal and botanical dietary supplements exceeds $5 billion; the immunity-supporting herb Echinacea alone accounts for sales of $130 million (Source: Nutrition Business Journal estimates, consumer sales 2009). In an effort to grow this business sector in the region, Blue Ridge Food Ventures established the first shared-use Natural Products Manufacturing Facility in the US.
Equipment at our facility allows entrepreneurs to produce, bottle, seal and label their natural products in capsules, creams, tubes, tinctures, extracts and lotions. The facility is compliant with current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) guidelines to ensure that herbal products are acceptable for clinical trials and domestic sales.
Our partnership with the adjacent BioBusiness Center and Laboratory of Asheville- Buncombe Technical Community College helps entrepreneurs succeed, providing access to laboratory services, including testing and certifying raw materials and natural products, and assisting them through the product development and certification process. Producers can also receive the required cGMP training, ensuring that every business using our facility is compliant with the latest FDA guidelines.
TOOLS TO GROW YOUR NATURAL PRODUCTS BUSINESS
• The Natural Products Manufacturing Facility at Blue Ridge Food Ventures is compliant with current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) guidelines for producing dietary supplements.
• Equipment is available for drying, extraction, grinding, sealing and labeling in bottles, tubes and capsules.
• Quantitative analysis as required by the FDA for dietary supplements is available through the BioNetwork Natural Products Lab.
• Classes are available on compliance, quality control, quality testing, marketing and more.
• Business coaching, consultation and mentoring, for both startups and established natural products companies, is also available.
• Let us do the work for you! Companies can also contract with Blue Ridge Food Ventures to produce and package your product.
ABOUT cGMP COMPLIANCE
The facility complies with federal current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) guidelines, standards that meet Food and Drug Administration requirements for manufacturing, packaging, labeling and holding of dietary supplements. The standards aim to ensure that herbal products are acceptable for clinical trials and domestic sales.
The standards requiring these GMP guidelines were introduced in 2007 and phased-in beginning 2008 for businesses of 500+ full-time employees, and in 2009 for businesses of 20 to 499 employees.
As of June 25, 2010, businesses producing dietary supplements with 20 employees or fewer are required to follow these standards. Even a one-person business must use an FDA-compliant facility (i.e., no more producing in a home kitchen, basement, garage or the like).
PROJECT PARTNERS AND FUNDERS
• The facility works in partnership with the Natural Products Laboratory at the BioBusiness Center, which provides key training and analytical services to users of the new facility which are also mandated by the new federal regulations. They offer a wide variety of education and training programs for the Natrual Products Industry, including a two-day class on current Good Manufacuring Practices which is required of any small businesses wishing to use the manufacturing facility at Blue Ridge Food Ventures. Check out their class schedule
The Lab is located adjacent to Blue Ridge Food Ventures at the AB Tech Enka campus in Asheville. Other partners are the Small Business and Technology Development Center, part of the University of North Carolina system, and Gaia Herbs, a dietary supplement manufacturer in Brevard.
• Primary funding comes from the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, whose mission is to provide long-term economic and societal benefits to North Carolina through support of biotechnology research, business, education and strategic policy statewide, and the Golden LEAF Foundation, a nonprofit grants-making organization, plus Blue Ridge Food Ventures and Gaia Herbs.
Driving directions from I-40 west bound or east bound: Take Exit 44. At the traffic light at the end of the exit ramp, turn right (south on 19/23). Go to the fourth traffic light and turn left on Sand Hill Road. Go to the second entrance on the left and turn into the campus. The Haynes Conference Center will be on your right and Blue Ridge Food Ventures in the Incubator Building on your left.
AdvantageWest and Blue Ridge Food Ventures enabled me to turn my idea for a business into a reality. You rock!
Using Blue Ridge Food Ventures, I was able to move quickly to get my award-winning product from testing to full production in just a year.
Mary Lou Surgi
, Executive Director
Blue Ridge Food Ventures
1461 Sand Hill Road
Candler, NC 28715
Email Mary Lou Surgi