The canning plant will not open this year due to not being inspected. The school system is planning to relocate the cannery to the new Pickens Junior High campus.
For the first time in decades, the Pickens County Canning Plant will not open during peak vegetable season.
The announcement came during the regular Pickens County Board of Education meeting on Thursday, July 20. The canning plant is owned by the school system and, like most canning plants in the state, is run by the system’s agricultural program teachers.
In a prepared statement, Dr. Carlton Wilson explained that it was brought to his attention the facility, located behind the old Jasper Middle School campus, had not been inspected by the state for several years. The cannery was originally slated to be inspected the first week in July, but that date was pushed back to late fall due to lack of inspectors.
“Due to this information, I am not comfortable opening our canning plant without the proper safety clearance. With the safety of our employees and customers at the forefront, we will not open our canning plant this year. We are exploring the possibility of relocating and updating our plant to the new Pickens Jr. High Campus. I know this may be a huge inconvenience to several of our citizens and for that I am truly sorry.”
The closest cannery is in Gilmer County at Clear Creek Middle School. Their hours of operation are Tuesday and Thursday through the end of November from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Processing must begin by 11 a.m. Cans are available for purchase. Customers must provide their own glass jars. The facility is located at 465 Ellijay, Ga. They can be reached at 706-276-5095.