Green Mountain coffee plant to expand

Green Mountain adding roasting, processing operation

  • Green Mountain Coffee Roasters: GMCR on Nasdaq
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  • Wednesday close: Up $2.05 to $39.85

The sour economy doesn't seem to be weakening the taste for coffee, at least for Waterbury, Vt.-based Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc., which is reporting hefty first-quarter profits and announcing it is adding an $8 million coffee roasting and processing operation to its East Knox County manufacturing plant in Forks of the River Industrial Park.

Green Mountain reported a profit of $14.4 million, or 56 cents per diluted share, for the first quarter, up 392 percent from $2.9 million, or 12 cents per diluted share, in first quarter 2008.

First quarter net sales totaled $197.0 million as compared to $126.4 million reported in the same period a year ago, a 56 percent increase.

"We are off to a very strong start for fiscal 2009 with our first quarter results," Green Mountain President and CEO Lawrence J. Blanford said in a statement. "The robust growth rate of Keurig brewer sales during the holiday season contributed meaningfully to our sales growth this past quarter."

The Forks of the River plant makes "K-Cup" coffee portion packs for Keurig Single-Cup coffee makers. The planned roasting and processing operation will be used to support the production lines in operation at the plant now, according to the statement.

In November, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters started production at its 334,000-square-foot facility on 31 acres along Water Plant Road. This was an expansion for the company, which operates a roasting and distribution facility in Waterbury and a manufacturing center in Essex, Vt. Green Mountain wanted to build production capacity outside New England in order to support growth across the country.

"This investment in our manufacturing capacity will allow us to continue to strengthen our infrastructure for the national expansion of our brands and our growth in the single-serve market," said Scott McCreary, Green Mountain Coffee chief operating officer. "The increased capacity through our packaging, and now our roasting and grinding, gives us added flexibility to support our projected growth over the next several years, and creates opportunities for longer-term efficiency gains."

The company is now looking into various roasting and grinding equipment suppliers and in the spring plans to start building a structure to hold coffee silos for the new operation. The goal is to have all equipment in place and working with the rest of the plant by early fall.

During the first quarter, Green Mountain shipped 357 million Keurig K-Cup portion packs, a 55 percent increase over first quarter 2008.

"Even in a difficult consumer economy, (Green Mountain) is driving significant top and bottom growth with innovative products that have tremendous consumer appeal and are positioned at the intersection of quality and value," Blanford said.

Company-wide, inventories decreased 22 percent to $66.8 million by Dec. 27, compared to $85.3 million on Sept. 27, which the company said indicated strong holiday sales of Keurig "At Home" single-cup brewing machines and K-Cups.

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Comments » 14

RogerP writes:

I do remember reading a story almost like this one, if not this one.

laughingoutloud writes:

previous story was about the plant opening...this seems to be about a new expansion. at least one of our companies is doing well and making a profit.

deerman writes:

Unfortunately the piece said nothing about job creation. Which is what is so badly needed.

tnboy76 writes:

Mmmmm, I love my Green Mountain Extra Bold every morning. Love those K-cups...

Duckpond writes:

Deerman, always something negative in a very positive story.

David72360 writes:

Green Mountain has several positions posted on careerbuilders.com if you are looking for a job. Not sure why the KNS would not report that! ???

Wondering writes:

I'm glad to see some business fluorish in these tough times!

leon writes:

It did not take the messiah long to turn this thing around did it? Just think how great it will be when the part of the stimulus package that funds the National Endowment of the Arts sets in. I feel like Moses must have felt when he was taken to the mountain top and shown the promised land.

KCHS63 writes:

in response to leon:

It did not take the messiah long to turn this thing around did it? Just think how great it will be when the part of the stimulus package that funds the National Endowment of the Arts sets in. I feel like Moses must have felt when he was taken to the mountain top and shown the promised land.

Don't worry. Everyone in the Sanhedrin (Red State Tennessee) will be there to crucify him. That's Tennessee's role now: stand on the sideline and take pot shots. When you use that sacreligious imagery, it can come back to bite you in your negative, smarmy arse. What's your solution? Your party sure doesn't have one.

scaryworldET writes:

What? No nasty comments about "yankees" from Vermont?

SpongeBob writes:

in response to KCHS63:

Don't worry. Everyone in the Sanhedrin (Red State Tennessee) will be there to crucify him. That's Tennessee's role now: stand on the sideline and take pot shots. When you use that sacreligious imagery, it can come back to bite you in your negative, smarmy arse. What's your solution? Your party sure doesn't have one.

Yes, I've noticed the change also. For eight years we didn't have to put up with people making negative and slanderous comments about the person holding possibly the highest office in the world. Wait a minute, I do seem to recall a few negative....no alot of negative...no, constant negative comments about the last guy. So far, the new ones getting off pretty light.

scaryworldET writes:

in response to SpongeBob:

Yes, I've noticed the change also. For eight years we didn't have to put up with people making negative and slanderous comments about the person holding possibly the highest office in the world. Wait a minute, I do seem to recall a few negative....no alot of negative...no, constant negative comments about the last guy. So far, the new ones getting off pretty light.

You seem to forget that Bush had an extraordinarily high approval rating just after 9/11, so many Americans gave him the benefit of the doubt and supported him. Obviously this changed, but a good number of people who might not have otherwise voted for him were willing to support him. Shame that in this economic crisis we don't see similar support for our current president.

exiledinLA writes:

Good news ...and good coffee!

aliwagsdale writes:

first good news we've heard in this economy. Hopefully it will create some jobs for those out of work right now.

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