At its January 25 meeting, the Colgate Board of Trustees approved the sale of five acres of land to Hamilton’s Good Nature Farm Brewery & Tap Room (GNB), owned by Carrie Blackmore ’08 and husband Matt Whalen. GNB will construct new facilities on the site, which is located on Route 12B and is part of a 25-acre parcel known as the Snyder property. Colgate has owned the property since 2012.
After examining GNB’s plans and seeing the significant financial support from the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council, Board Chair Denis Cronin said the trustees believed the transaction and the resulting project will benefit members of the community, the local economy, and the university.
Plans for the GNB facilities include a new 6,000-square-foot space for manufacturing — enabling statewide distribution — as well as tours, classes, and events. A 3,500-foot structure on the property will be renovated into warehouse and office space.
At the new brewing location, Good Nature intends to employ 16 new full-time employees in addition to current employees.
Colgate’s Upstate Institute plans to partner with Good Nature Brewery, as it does with many local organizations, to develop community-based learning opportunities for students. As a licensed New York State Farm Brewery, GNB makes extensive use of locally grown products, offering students insight into the economic benefits, and challenges, of local agriculture and related businesses. Projects examining sustainability and environmental impacts, as well as the history and culture of brewing, are also envisioned.
Colgate students will continue to manage the university’s community garden on the property, where it has been in operation since last spring. The site currently produces 30 types of vegetables, 11 herbs, and several flowers, which are sold to faculty, staff, and students via a farm stand, or donated to the Hamilton Food Cupboard.
On Friday, February 20, the Upstate Institute will host Blackmore and Whalen at a brown bag event on campus to discuss their expansion plans. Staff from the Upstate Institute will talk about some of the partnerships the expansion will provide for Colgate.
GNB promotes responsible alcohol use, and the expansion of their business will stimulate conversations about how beer and brewing can be consistent with maintaining a balanced, healthy lifestyle.
Founded in 2010, Good Nature Farm Brewery offers microbrews handcrafted from local ingredients. The company will continue to sell Good Nature products from its tap room on Broad Street, which opened in 2013.