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Starbucks Purchases Manufacturing Plant a Month after Buying Bakery

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Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX), the world’s largest coffee chain company will start building its new manufacturing plant in Augusta, Georgia.  The company expects to create 140 manufacturing jobs and hundreds of jobs related to construction, shipping and other supply chain functions.

The company estimates that 75 percent of the facility’s workforce will be composed of skilled processing workers, including maintenance and engineering technicians, roasting operators, soluble process operators, and packaging operators, while the remaining 25 percent will be comprised of management and administrative staff.

Starbucks also states that the manufacturing facility will cost $172 million. It is the first company-owned manufacturing facility to produce soluble products including Starbucks VIA Ready Brew, Frappuccino blended beverages and many other ready to drink beverages offered by Starbucks. According to the company, these products are currently manufactured overseas.

At present, Starbucks has four roasting plants in the United States located in Kent, Washington; York, Pennsylvania; Sandy Run, South Carolina; and Carson Valley, Nevada. The company employs more than 830 workers within the four plants. The manufacturing facility has a total area of 180,000 square feet, with the capacity to produce as much 4,000 metric tons of soluble products per year. It is also designed to meet the standards of the LEED certification.

In addition, Starbucks also announced its $200,000 donations to support the community programs in Augusta. The company will be working with the Augusta Regional Collaboration, a local non-government organization and with the elected official and civic organization to identify local programs in need of infrastructure development that will provide long-term benefit for the community.

Peter Gibbons, executive vice president of Starbucks Global Supply Chain Operations said that the company is delighted in creating jobs and building something special in Georgia in the midst of challenging economic situation.  In addition, he said, “Starbucks has long believed that there is a direct link between our success and the vitality of the communities in which we do business. With access to a skilled labor force, advanced technology, and critical transportation and logistics infrastructure, Augusta is a great example of how building high-tech manufacturing facilities in America makes good business sense while supporting the communities where our customers and partners live and work.”

This is not the first time Starbucks entered into different areas of the food industry. In June 2012, Starbucks Corporation purchased Bay Bread, in an effort to offer more baked goods in stores.

Established in 1971, Starbucks is the leading retailer and roaster of specialty coffee worldwide. As of today, the company’s stock value is up by 1.77 percent to $53.61 per share.

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Marie Cabural

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