FONDA — The exclusive option agreement between Montgomery County and E29 Labs, announced during last week’s meeting of the Montgomery County Legislature’s Economic Development and Planning Committee, received Legislative approval during Tuesday’s meeting of the full Legislature.
The dormant former home of Beech-Nut Foods in Canajoharie, is one step closer to once again becoming an economic engine for the region as the result of an exclusive option agreement between Montgomery County and E29 Labs. E29 Labs is a team of experienced commercial cannabis production professionals that are ready to capitalize on the state’s recent legalization of the industry.
The purchase-and-sale agreement is pending the completion of a 12-month due diligence period by E29 Labs to fully explore the viability of the site being transformed into a grow-site once the legalities are worked out with state officials to come up with a plan to capitalize on the recreational use legalization of marijuana in the state.
The investment, which would encompass 19.6 acres of the 26.9-acre site, has the potential to realize significant private investment by the company, as well as the creation of union manufacturing, office and executive support employment opportunities. Returning the property to private ownership will also help generate critical new revenue streams for Montgomery County, as well as the village and town of Canajoharie.
Montgomery County Business Development Center CEO Ken Rose thanked the Legislature for their support of the development agreement.
“For more than a decade the county and the Business Development Center have been working to revitalize the Exit 29 site because it is a transformational opportunity for the village of Canajoharie and the community as a whole. Today’s approval is another positive step forward in returning the dormant former home of Beech-Nut Foods to its place as a powerful economic engine for our area,” said Rose in a news release. “The long-term economic impact of the property and the investment by E29 Labs has the potential to be significant and our office is looking forward to working with their team of professionals to ensure the site reaches its full potential. This investment will grow the local economy and provide a range of job opportunities.”
Under the terms of the agreement with E29 Labs, Montgomery County will receive a non-refundable deposit against a $550,000 purchase price for the land encompassing their portion of the site. E29 Labs will have exclusive rights for up to 12 months to conduct a due diligence process and review of the property including performing necessary environmental testing, investigations, and inspections related to the proposed manufacturing facility. The company has committed to expend resources for site prep work and any necessary remediation at its cost. Montgomery County and E29 Labs will also be negotiating a larger community benefit package as components of the redevelopment of the site. Returning the property back to private holding would also result in significant savings to the county.
Under the terms of the agreement with E29 Labs, Montgomery County will receive a non-refundable deposit against a $550,000 purchase price for the land encompassing their portion of the site.
E29 Labs’ preliminary vision is to create their new facility within a park-like setting on the site that also adds public open recreation space to the area.