On February 18, 2020 Northern Development received an application from Fox Mountain Brewing for $15,856 through its Competitiveness Consulting Rebate program to hire two professional consulting companies to help coordinate the brewery’s build, equipment placing for optimal production, training and the development of standard operating procedures. Nine days after receiving the application, Northern Development approved the project.
“We appreciated Northern Development’s timely response to our funding application, especially as we were working hard to finalize our business before opening our brewery and taproom to the public,” said David Reedman, president, Fox Mountain Brewing. “Receiving financial assistance to hire two professional consulting companies early in our operations helps set us up for success.”
Through their project application, Fox Mountain Brewing was able to hire two unique professional consultants to support their development, including a specialized consultant for craft breweries. This consultant developed standard operating procedures for a variety of tasks that the brewery regularly performs, including beer transfer and carbonation, cleaning and sanitizing and keg washing and filling. The other consultant supported them during startup and developed a preventative maintenance list and schedule. These guidelines and procedures allowed Fox Mountain Brewing to develop strong habits at the beginning of their operations to produce quality beer efficiently and to help prevent costly equipment failures in the future.
Attracting a brew pub to Williams Lake was a tactic identified in the Williams Lake Economic Strategy, developed in 2018. This report was prepared to identify opportunities for economic development that would reflect the city’s vision for future prosperity, including the attraction of residents, visitors and businesses. One of the actions suggested to help achieve this was to work on attracting agri-food wholesale and retail businesses to Williams Lake such as a brew pub.
“Fox Mountain Brewing is proud to be Williams Lake’s first brewery and we’re grateful for the incredible support we’ve received from residents and visitors,” continued Reedman. “We know Williams Lake is a great place to live and we’re pleased to be contributing to this community and adding to its appeal.”
Since opening in summer 2020, Fox Mountain Brewing has already made an economic difference in Williams Lake. They created and filled 16 new positions, up from a single employee before June, and revenues for the first month of operation exceeded projections. In addition, they have sold more beer than initially forecast.
Funding for this project came from Northern Development’s Competitiveness Consulting Rebate program. This program provides up to $30,000 as a rebate to small and medium sized businesses that are engaged in select industries for projects that focus on increased productivity, new or incremental revenues, profitability and/or job creation.