February 21, 2017
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces North American Breweries Breaks Ground on Genesee Eco-Brewery District in Rochester

Governor Cuomo Announces North American Breweries Breaks Ground on Genesee Eco-Brewery District in Rochester

$50 Million Dollar Project will Generate 128 New Jobs in Rochester Investment Complements "Finger Lakes Forward" - Region's Successful Upstate Revitalization Initiative Blueprint to Grow the Economy and Create New Opportunities Renderings of the Eco-Brewery Expansion are Available Here, Here and Here

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that North American Breweries broke ground on Phase I of its five-year plan to create the "Genesee Eco-Brewery District" in the city of Rochester. The $50 million project will grow the Genesee Brewery business and create more than 120 new jobs while helping to raise the quality standards for New York State’s beer industry, making Rochester a top destination for brewing and beverage-related tourism.

"The expansion of the Genesee Brewery is a clear example of how we are leveraging Rochester’s many strengths to spur economic growth and create job opportunities across the entire region," Governor Cuomo said. "Working together to build upon the Genesee Brewery’s rich history and helping to support its great future is one more way we’re pushing the Finger Lakes Forward."

Phase I of the project will focus on the most visible part of the brewery modernization: a new 13,000 square-foot brewery “cold block” on St. Paul Street. The facility will include a dry hopping system, yeast separator and beer filter, ingredient addition system, and cleaning system. The building will also feature two stories of glass windows that will allow patrons and tourists to see firsthand how beer is finished. This phase also includes the installation of a new outdoor fermentation cellar behind the facility, which will allow the Genesee Brewery to ferment a larger variety of beer styles and flavors more efficiently.

Kris Sirchio, CEO of Genesee’s parent-company North American Breweries said, "We are so grateful to Governor Cuomo for his unwavering support. This project creates new opportunities for Genesee, the Rochester community and New York State. We’re investing to sustain Genesee and build on its potential. By modernizing our brewery, we will make it more efficient, allowing us to sustain and expand our business."

Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, "The Genesee Eco-Brewery District is the latest example of how the state’s improved business climate is enabling New York companies to grow and create jobs here at home. Under Governor Cuomo’s leadership, craft beverage businesses are thriving and, with its long tradition as an important producer, the Finger Lakes region is well-positioned to take advantage of the opportunities presented by this burgeoning industry."

North American Breweries’ Genesee Eco-Brewery District is a multi-phase project, with Phase I breaking ground earlier today and Phase II currently in the planning stages. The $50 million project is being supported by Empire State Development, which has offered NAB up to $4.5 million in performance-based Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits; and up to $5 million from the Finger Lakes’ Upstate Revitalization Initiative funding. ESD’s incentives are tied to NAB’s capital investment and commitment to hire people out of poverty, and of the 128 new jobs that this project will create, more than 60 will be given to New Yorkers coming out of poverty.

The project will also build on the success of the Genesee Brew House, which last year hosted nearly 300,000 people who experienced the on-site museum, restaurant and pilot brewery. Phase II will expand on this vision, adding opportunities for people to learn, taste and experience beers from throughout the region. The Genesee Eco-Brewery District is expected to be completed by 2022.

The Finger Lakes Economic Regional Economic Development Council identified poverty reduction as a primary goal in its URI strategic plan, in partnership with the Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative.

Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs, Monroe Community College President Anne Kress and Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman said, "The progress on this transformative project is very exciting. North American Breweries was the first private company to commit to hiring people impacted by poverty since Governor Cuomo created the Rochester Anti-Poverty Task Force last year. Incentivizing these kind of projects is key to supporting “Pathways to Prosperity” which is at the heart of the poverty reduction goal in the Finger Lakes Forward URI strategic plan."

Assembly Majority Leader Joseph D. Morelle said, "Today's groundbreaking marks yet another exciting milestone in the continued evolution and growth of one of New York's premier beverage producers and agritourism destinations. Upon completion, the Genesee Eco-Brewery District will deliver a world class experience to visitors while supporting the creation of new jobs that ensure all people in our community are able to participate in the economic activity generated by this exciting project. I am grateful to Governor Cuomo, my colleagues on the Regional Economic Development Council and our partners at North American Breweries for their continued support and belief in the economic potential of our community."

Senator Joseph Robach said, "Today’s groundbreaking is an exciting step for Genesee Brewery and the City of Rochester. Genesee Brewery is a Rochester institution, and with the beginning of phase one of a five year plan for the creation of the Genesee Eco-Brewery District, this ensures that Genesee Brewery and Rochester will be on the forefront of innovation in New York State’s beer industry. Through investment in projects such as this, jobs and opportunity may continue to be created to benefit all of the Rochester region."

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said, "The Genesee Brewery is an important part of Rochester's past, and thanks to this investment from the State of New York they will continue to be a pillar of our community as we look toward the future. Thanks to North American Breweries' commitment to the triple bottom line and lifting people out of poverty, this investment will lead to even more jobs, safer neighborhoods and better educational opportunities."

Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo said, "Monroe County has become a top destination for breweries in our region. We are proud to see a local company like Genesee Brewing enjoying success and we could not be happier that they’ve chosen to expand right here at home."

Established in 1878, The Genesee Brewery is New York State’s oldest brewery and one of the oldest continually operating breweries in the United States. For more information about Genesee Brewing Company click here. For more information about North American Breweries click here.

Accelerating Finger Lakes Forward
Today’s announcement complements "Finger Lakes Forward," the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $3.4 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – investing in key industries including photonics, agriculture‎ and food production, and advanced manufacturing. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Rochester, Batavia and Canandaigua as a destination to grow and invest in.

Now, the region is accelerating Finger Lakes Forward with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State’s $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 8,200 new jobs. More information is available here.​


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