Deschutes Brewery chooses Roanoke for Eastern U.S. location

Deschutes Brewery will invest $85 million to establish its Eastern U.S. brewery in the City of Roanoke.

Virginia successfully competed against North Carolina and South Carolina on the project, which will create 108 new jobs paying above the average prevailing wage in the region. 

“This project is a big win for the tourism, manufacturing and craft beverage industries in the Roanoke region and the Commonwealth,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. “Deschutes’ decision to locate its East Coast operation in Virginia is a strong testament to our outstanding talent, strategic location and superior business climate. We congratulate the City of Roanoke and the company, and we look forward to a long partnership.”

“Deschutes Brewery’s selection of Roanoke for its East Coast operation helps solidify Virginia’s standing as a key player in the country’s growing craft beer industry, which saw sales increase by almost 19% in 2015,” said Todd Haymore, Virginia Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry. “Adding Deschutes to our world-class, award-winning roster of homegrown craft breweries, wineries, distilleries, and cideries will bring increased national attention to Virginia as the top East Coast destination for craft beverage lovers. In addition to the local jobs and revenue Deschutes will generate, their investment also will bring increased agri-tourism activity and additional production and market opportunities for Virginia’s agricultural community.”

Named as OUTSIDE’s Best Places to Work in for the last three years in a row and winner of the 2015 Oregon Sustainability Award, Deschutes Brewery was founded in 1988 as a brew pub in Bend, Oregon. Still family and employee owned 28 years later, the brewery is known for brewing a diverse line-up of award winning beers including the popular Fresh Squeezed IPA, Black Butte Porter, and Mirror Pond Pale Ale. Deschutes Brewery now ships beer to 28 states, the District of Columbia, and around the world from its main brewing facility located on the banks of the Deschutes River.

Michael LaLonde, president of Deschutes Brewery, said, “After visiting several amazing communities over the past two years, we are very excited to be heading to Roanoke. We love the region and everyone we’ve had the opportunity to meet and work with during this process has been incredible. We have absolutely been blown away with how the community rallied around bringing us here and has given us such a warm welcome. #Deschutes2Rke we’re on our way and proud to be able to now call Roanoke our second home.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Roanoke and the Roanoke Regional Partnership to secure the project for Virginia. Governor McAuliffe approved a $3 million grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist Roanoke with the project. The company is eligible to receive funding from the Economic Development Access Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Transportation, as well as state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. The company will also be eligible to receive up to a $250,000 grant from the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund (AFID), administered by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, depending on its procurement and use of Virginia grown products in its operations. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.

“Roanoke is honored to be chosen as Deschutes Brewery’s East Coast location after a very thorough review of several communities in the Southeast,” said Roanoke City Manager Chris Morrill. “It is a company with a strong culture of community engagement, recognized for its craftsmanship and will be a perfect fit for Roanoke’s vibrant outdoor lifestyle. We are thrilled to welcome Deschutes to Virginia’s Blue Ridge as we continue to build a more diverse, resilient economy.”

“The Economic Development Authority is thrilled to support Deschutes Brewery in the decision to construct their East Coast manufacturing and distribution facility in the City of Roanoke,” said Charles Hunter II, Chair of the Economic Development Authority. “The EDA has a long history of working to recruit and retain businesses to this city, and we are excited to work with Deschutes as they invest in the community, create jobs, and put Roanoke on the map as a major beer tourism destination.”

“We are very excited to welcome the new Deschutes Brewery location to Roanoke,” said Delegate Sam Rasoul.“Deschutes will be a fantastic addition to our economy and community, and our region’s outdoor offerings and friendly culture are a great match for the company. I am grateful to city and state officials as well as the many local citizens who showed Deschutes what a wonderful place the Roanoke Valley is to live, work, and play.”

“This is great news for Roanoke,” said Senator John Edwards. “I commend Governor McAuliffe for his efforts in bringing a major brewery to our region, creating over 100 jobs and bringing an $85 million dollar capital investment. This shows the quality of life of this region as a major factor in attracting new industry.”


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