2,500 manufacturing jobs promised at Wythe County glove factory

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WYTHEVILLE, Va. (WDBJ) – Governor Ralph Northam calls a recent investment in southwest Virginia the largest job creation in the region in a generation.

Northam was in Wytheville Monday afternoon to announce a joint venture that is expected to create more than 2,500 jobs in the area.

The announcement also represents a restoration of jobs on American soil, bringing back the creation of personal protective equipment from Asia.

Blue Star NBR, LLC and Blue Star-AGI, Inc., a joint venture between Blue Star Manufacturing and American Glove Innovations (AGI), have committed $ 714.1 million to create an advanced and unique nitrile butadiene rubber. kind. (NBR) Nitrile Glove Manufacturing Plant and Production Operation in Progress Park in County Wythe.

Governor Northam said the business is a direct result of the state’s investments that will modernize Progress Park. These investments include $ 3 million to expand the Fort Chiswell wastewater treatment plant, $ 1.5 million to expand public sewer infrastructure and $ 4 million to build a water reservoir to serve all Progress Park. The water tank and plant improvements are also planned to serve the surrounding community. They will occupy about 200 acres, with the potential to triple in size in the future.

During the announcement Monday in Wytheville, executives said Virginia had successfully competed against Tennessee and Texas for the project. These 2,500 jobs should appear within three to five years.

“These investments are leading to the biggest commitment to job creation Southwest Virginia has seen in a generation, and it is a game-changer for the Commonwealth,” Governor Northam said in a press release. “It’s about investing to bring jobs back to the United States from overseas, and doing it right here in rural America. We can all be proud that Commonwealth investment is bringing these jobs back to America on this unique manufacturing campus. It can be a transformation for all of Southwest Virginia. “

According to Blue Star NBR, the company produces nitrile butadiene rubber, an oil-resistant synthetic rubber made from a copolymer of acrylonitrile and butadiene. The first NBR facility in County Wythe is expected to have an annual capacity of around 90,000 metric tonnes, which can support the production of up to 11 billion gloves per year. The first of Blue Star-AGI’s facilities aims to launch a quantity of between 5 and 8 billion gloves per year, then increase to reach a production of 60 billion gloves per year.

Executives say they will focus primarily on selling in North America. They plan to produce for distributors and users in the healthcare, government, retail and hospitality sectors.

The company aims to meet the demand for these kind of gloves and help solve the supply chain shortages and breakdowns that have been highlighted by the pandemic.

Congressman Morgan Griffith and Delegate Chris Hurst were on hand for the announcement, along with a number of other local leaders.

You can read more about the announcement here.

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