SUFFOLK--The Lipton Tea plant in Suffolk is getting bigger and better.
Gov. Bob McDonnell (R-VA) and Mayor Linda Jones announced parent company Unilever will spend nearly $100 million to upgrade the W. Washington Street plant with modern equipment and state-of-the-art technology.
A Unilever spokesman told WVEC.com there are approximately 300 workers at the plant and it produces six billion each year for the U.S. market.
"As the largest tea production facility in the U.S., this operation is crucial to the prosperity of the company and employs nearly 300 in Hampton Roads,” said McDonnell
While the investment won't mean additional jobs, it will ensure stability at the plant and will enable facility upgrades and the purchase of new production machinery.
Suffolk beat out Kentucky, North Carolina and South Carolina for the project.
Mayor Linda T. Johnson stated, “Unilever is a global leader in the food, home and personal care products industry with facilities and resources all over the world. Their decision to stay and reinvest in this facility is a testament to our commitment to keep Virginia and Suffolk an inviting location for business investment and expansion.”
The company has been in the city for 58 years.