FermenTasmania has chosen a new chief executive officer as it continues to raise finances for a food and fibre fermentation hub at Legana.
Red Brick Road Cider co-founder Karina Dambergs took on the role last week as the project approaches a critical juncture in its development.
FermenTasmania will apply for about $6 million funding under the Building Better Regions Fund before the end of the year, where it could match the funding using the Launceston City Deal.
The project has already received land and $2.5 million in ancillary works from West Tamar Council, along with $3 million for fit-out and equipment. The remaining funding is for the construction itself, which would provide facilities for micro brewing, wine and cheese making, baking and further studies.
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Ms Dambergs, who also organises the Launceston Night Market, said the project would have far-reaching benefits for Northern Tasmanian businesses.
"It brings different things for different sized businesses," she said.
"For small businesses, the space is important and there will be support in development new products to get on the market, because you can't commit to the capital straight away.
"For larger businesses, I can see a benefit in that we can work really closely with the university for training and development of staff.
"It's industry-led. I listen to industry, and hear what their challenges are, and try to bring different people together to solve them."
The project would be one of the first in Australia to provide space for a range of industries at one fermentation hub.
FermenTasmania chairperson Kim Seagram said it was an exciting time for all involved in the project.
"We're working on an independent busy case study as we speak," she said.
"If we are successful in Building Better Regions, it's more than likely we'll move into the City Deal program to match funds there.
"Hopefully by the middle of next year we'll have the funds, and we'll be able to start work."