The NYS Food Venture Center, which began operations in 1988 under the direction of Dr. Donald Downing, was an extension program of the Department of Food Science & Technology at Cornell University funded by New York State. Today the Cornell Food Venture Center (CFVC) provides technical assistance on food manufacturing issues to entrepreneurs and food companies by drawing on Cornell experts, links with the FDA and USDA, and the professional knowledge of the center director and extension support specialist. In 2016, the CFVC responded to more than 7,000 inquiries for assistance on marketing food products. 468 Food Entrepreneurs needed safety evaluations on 1,141 specialty products and processes for commercial production plus another 262 amendments were issued on already existing products and processes. The center's laboratory analyzed 1,682 samples of food prototypes to address their safety and technological feasibility.
April 2017 the Cornell Food Venture Center opened an office in Brooklyn, the Cornell Food Venture Center - NYC, under the direction of Christopher Loss, Ph.D. Both office will work in conjunction with each other. CFVC - NYC will offer all the same services.
The Northeast Center for Food Entrepreneurship (NECFE) was a joint effort to expand the activities of the NYS Food Venture Center at Cornell University and the Center for Food Science at the University of Vermont, and was funded in part by Fund for Rural America/CSREES/USDA from January 2000 to January 2005.
The Center for Food Science (CFS) at the University of Vermont was established by the Vermont Technology Council in 1995 under Executive order by Governor Howard Dean. In 1996 the Center received $250,000 from the USDA Rural Business Enterprise Grants program. This funding was matched by the state legislature, allowing the partial renovation of Carrigan Dairy Science Building which would house the Center for Science. The NECFE grant gave UVM funding for NECFE staffing housed at the Center for Food Science in Carrigan Dairy Science Building.
The Cornell Food Venture Center continues to work collaboratively with The Vermont Food Venture Center in Fairfax, VT which also was established in 1996 with funding from the USDA Rural Business Enterprise Grants program.