Coffee company’s Windsor location to create 800 jobs

Published 12:21 pm Friday, October 28, 2011

By Dale Liesch

The Tidewater News

It’s only October, but an announcement Friday from Gov. Bob McDonnell that a coffee company would bring 800 new jobs and $180 million investment to Windsor had Isle of Wight County officials thinking about Christmas.

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Jobs will pay an average of $40,000 a year.

“I believe in Santa Claus,” said Isle of Wight Board of Supervisors Chairman Thomas Wright. “It’s a new birth. We’ve got people coming and new jobs — what more could you ask for?”

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters will invest in a production and distribution facility in the Shirley T. Holland Intermodal Park on Route 460.

The company will invest $180 million during the initial five years of the facility’s operations. Green Mountain has agreed to purchase a 330,000-square-foot building on a 64-acre parcel of land.

“It’s good news for the community, and it’s a great day in the commonwealth,” McDonnell said in making the announcement on Friday. “It will put a number of people back to work.”

In a press release sent to media outlets following the on-site announcement, McDonnell elaborated: “An investment of this proportion is transformational for Isle of Wight County. The region continues to rebound after experiencing devastating job losses, and this project will put 800 Virginians back to work. GMCR makes a consumer product that is rapidly growing in popularity, and this new Mid-Atlantic location will allow the company to meet increased demand.”

According to Jon Wettstein, vice-president of supply chain operations for the company, Green Mountain would need about 800 workers within five years of opening.

The company, which produces single-serve portion packs for its Keurig brewing system, would handle grinding, roasting and packaging of its products at the Windsor facility.

The facility will operate 20 to 24 hours a day and will serve the Mid-Atlantic region and the Northeast.

The company is also expanding its facilities in Vermont and Washington.

Wettstein said Green Mountain would begin recruiting employees in December for site setup, and initial production should begin in the spring. Available jobs will be listed at

McDonnell approved a $4 million grant to assist with the project. In addition, through its Virginia Jobs Investment Program, the Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide funding and services to support the company’s recruitment and training activities.

“This announcement is confirmation to the citizens of Isle of Wight that our investments in real estate and infrastructure for the Shirley T. Holland Intermodal Park are beginning to pay off as we welcome significant advanced manufacturing projects to our community,” Isle of Wight County Chairman Thomas J. Wright III stated in the post-event press release. “The rewards will be realized for generations to come.”