Starbucks prefers Minden-area site for roasting plant |

Starbucks prefers Minden-area site for roasting plant

MINDEN, Nev. (AP) – Douglas County has emerged as the leading contender to become the third site of a Starbucks bean-roasting plant in the country.

The Seattle-based coffee giant is negotiating for a site in the Carson Valley Business Park near Minden, about 55 miles south of Reno, confirmed company spokesman Chris Gimbl.

”The Carson Valley site is definitely the front-runner,” Gimbl told Gardnerville’s Record-Courier newspaper.

While Gimbl wouldn’t say when the company would reach a final decision, he acknowledged Starbucks is no longer considering sites in Fernley or Stead, located closer to Reno.

”We are not currently negotiating with them,” Gimbl said. ”(We hope) to get this taken care of in the near future.”

The 300,000-square-foot facility, which Starbucks hopes to open sometime late next year, would generate up to 200 jobs.

Existing Starbucks roasting plants in Kent, Wash., and York, Pa., each employ about 200 people and manufacture up to 100 million pounds of coffee a year.

Starbucks cleared a major hurdle May 8 when it won unanimous support from the Douglas County Planning Commission for a height variance allowing 80-foot-high storage silos.

While the plant has the support of the local business community, it has prompted complaints from some residents who think it would pollute the valley and disturb the local landscape.

But county officials noted the 10-day height variance appeal deadline lapsed without opposition.

Carson Valley Business Park owner Gary Cook said negotiations are under way for Starbucks to buy a 50-acre site for the roasting plant and an adjoining 50-acre site for open space.

The coffee would be distributed to Starbucks outlets in southern California and the Southwest.

Starbucks has more than 4,000 locations worldwide.

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