Livingston Co. business contest sparks craft beverage boom

Livingston County, NY, entered 2017 with a grand total of one craft brewery and one cidery. That is about to change, big time.

In an effort to take advantage of the alcoholic beverage industry boom and create jobs in the county of some 65,000 residents a business plan competition called "Brew In Livingston" was created by the county's Economic Development Office. It also was intended to create a craft beverage trail to promote business cooperation and potential tourism.

On Friday, seven winners were announced. Four of them each will receive $35,000 microenterprise grants for furniture, fixtures, and equipment, as well as a one-year membership to the New York State Brewers Association, and free tax assistance from EFPR Group, a Rochester tax accountancy. The four are:
The county also will work with three others to seek additional funding, They are:
The effort is being funded by $185,000 in state grants announced Friday  by Governor Andrew Cuomo. The grants were awarded by the state through the Finger Lakes Economic Development Council and the region's Finger Lakes Forward economic development initiative.

The funds also will help establish a Brewing Microenterprise Program in Livingston County which will begin with four local businesses that will create 16 fulltime jobs and leverage $400,000 in additional resources from across the region.

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