Family-owned craft beer brewers Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. will open a brewery in Henderson County, bringing 95 full-time and 80 part-time jobs, Gov. Bev Perdue announced Wednesday.
The deal is supported by a $1.025 million incentive grant from the One North Carolina Fund.
The company will produce and distribute beer from a Mills River facility, along the French Broad River 12 miles south of Asheville. It will include an on-site restaurant. Salaries for the jobs created will vary by function. The brewery is expected to open by early 2014.
Sierra Nevada CEO Ken Grossman said the original brewery in California is reaching capacity as demand for the beer is growing.
“We felt the most responsible thing to do was to build a brewery on the other side of the country, to lessen our impact on the environment while continuing to place great craft beer into the hands of our consumers,” he said. The Mills River location will be the brand's first east of the Mississippi.
North Carolina is a hub of craft brews, with 21 brewpubs and 28 production breweries. "We are proud to be associated with the many fine breweries that call North Carolina home,” Grossman said.
State legislators last year changed laws to allow larger beer-makers to sell their product on site, a move aimed at attracting Sierra Nevada and another brewer eyeing the region.