Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc. celebrated the grand opening of its newest beverage facility in the Upper Macungie Township of Pennsylvania. The plant is Ocean Spray’s first in Pennsylvania and once fully operational later this year, it will handle about 40 percent of the cooperative’s North American volume. The co-op notes that the building of the facility has already served as a catalyst for hundreds of jobs in the Lehigh Valley during construction and Ocean Spray has created 180 permanent jobs at the new facility.
“The grower-owners of Ocean Spray Cranberries have made a major investment here in Pennsylvania and today’s celebration is the result of a lot of hard work by our employees and partners on this project,” said Randy Papadellis, president and CEO of Ocean Spray. “As a cooperative founded on the work ethic and values of its many Grower-Owners, Ocean Spray is committed to bringing a neighborly culture everywhere we do business. We are pleased to be joining the Lehigh Valley community and we look forward to being a part of the Pennsylvania economy for many decades to come.”
During Tuesday's grand opening ceremony, Papadellis was joined by the cooperative’s board of directors and senior management as well as Ocean Spray’s well-known characters from the TV commercials.
Ocean Spray broke ground on the 44 acre site in April 2012. More than 1,000 men and woman have put in close to 350,000 man hours to build the nearly 300,000 square-foot plant that will produce more than 30 million cases of iconic Ocean Spray juice beverages each year. These beverages range from 100 percent cranberry juice to blends made with blueberry, grapefruit, pomegranate and other juices, all packaged in different-size bottles and boxes. Ocean Spray will also recycle all waste from the facility – sending zero waste to landfill.
The Lehigh Valley Beverage Facility, as it’s officially called, is also a leader in innovation and the first beverage facility in North America to be powered by hot water – a major energy savings.
“This state-of-the-art facility truly does represent Ocean Spray’s commitment to the future,” said Erich Fritz, Vice President of Engineering and New Technologies for Ocean Spray, who has overseen the design and construction of the new beverage facility. “The Lehigh Valley facility is truly innovative with technology and systems designed to provide efficiency and major energy savings now and in the future.”
Ocean Spray bottled its first Cranberry Juice Cocktail in the Lehigh Valley on January 29, 2014. The facility will continue to increase volume over the coming months as all its lines come into production.