HENRY COUNTY (WSLS 10) - Blue Ridge Aquaculture plans to invest $3.2 million in Henry County, creating five new jobs.
The company is the largest producer of aquaculture-raised tilapia in the world using an environmentally sensitive, indoor recirculating system, according to Gov. Terry McAuliffe's office.
"The success of Virginia's agriculture industry is a testament to the diversity and quality of its products, as well as their outstanding reputation in the global economy," said McAuliffe. "I applaud Blue Ridge Aquaculture's continued investment in Henry County and their expansion speaks to the high-quality seafood and marketplace success of the company. We will continue to support projects and products that diversify our agriculture industry, build the new Virginia economy and contribute to the Commonwealth's reputation as the best place to do businesses around the world."
Virginia is the nation's third largest seafood producer and the largest on America's Atlantic coast. In addition, Virginia is ranked 10th nationally in aquaculture production.
The Commonwealth is partnering with Henry County and Blue Ridge Aquaculture on this project through the Governor's Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development (AFID) Fund, which is administered by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS). Governor McAuliffe approved a $50,000 grant from the AFID Fund to assist with the project, which Henry County is matching with local funds. The company was also awarded a grant from the Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission. In addition, the company is receiving a Real Property Investment Grant through the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.
"Blue Ridge Aquaculture is a leader in its field, and we are proud to have the company here in Henry County," said Jim Adams, Chairman of the Henry County Board of Supervisors. "This is a great day for all of us."