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Genesee County development agency racks up two more successes

BATAVIA - The Genesee County Economic Development Center has added two more achievements to a string of job-creating successes in what has become the agency's busiest year.
The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council has targeted the Western New York Science Technology and Advanced Manufacturing Park, known as STAMP, as one of 12 "transformative priority projects" in a nine-county region.
STAMP was conceived by the Genesee County development agency as a 1,200-acre business park in the Town of Alabama that would host next-generation high-tech industries making such products as computer chips and solar panels.
The development agency's application to the regional council seeks up to $12.5 million in state funds for site work. Environmental studies are complete, and approval from the Alabama Town board on a zoning change for the agricultural parcels is in the works. After winning the regional designation, STAMP will now compete for the state funding, with the winners to be announced later this fall.
The development agency has also received a federal grant of $1 million for infrastructure at its new Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park in the Town of Batavia.
Two yogurt manufacturers are building facilities that require an aquifer system for their operations. A municipal water supply is not adequate but can be used temporarily, since the park abuts the city's eastern border. The firms are Alpina Food Products' first U.S. venture and Muller Quaker, a German company in partnership with Pepsi-Co. Alpina is slated to open next month and Muller Quaker in 2013. The two facilities will employ about 230 people and will give a boost to dairy farmers in Genesee and Wyoming counties since Greek-style yogurt, their specialty, uses large quantities of milk.
The development agency is also operating a new Med-Tech Park, which houses Genesee Community College's Nursing School and other technical firms. Marktec Products, which makes label equipment for the food-processing industry, is a tenant in the Agri-Business Park, and Genesee Valley Mushrooms is planning a $20 million operation.