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Scott Ford: Plans in Place for Growth at Westrock in ConwayLock Icon

2 min read

Westrock Coffee Co.’s Conway production facility isn’t up and running yet, but its CEO is already planning for growth.

Scott Ford was the featured speaker at the Little Rock Regional Chamber’s annual meeting recently, and he said the 1.1 million-SF operation across two sites in Conway should begin commercial production in the back half of next year. The company is hiring about 170 people who will start there in January.

But the plant has the capacity for more employees to meet great demand. 

Ford said the facility will be the largest of its kind in the world, bringing in green coffee beans from 35 countries and then roasting, grinding, extracting, concentrating and packaging products in whatever form its customers prefer.

The plant will start with four packaging lines — bottles, two can sizes and multiserve jugs — but Ford said the infrastructure is in place to add four more. Each set of four lines requires about 200 employees, he said.

“We’ve invested heavily to build ourselves a 10-year runway” of capacity, Ford said. “And the thing is, we’re probably gonna run out of it in three or four, not 10 or 12, years. But that’s a good problem. We’re working on that now.”

In June, Westrock said the number of jobs the plant will create over the next five years had risen from 250 to 850 “due to overwhelming response from customers.”

Last month, Westrock reported $16.6 million in net income for the quarter that ended Sept. 30, compared with a loss of $13 million in the same quarter a year ago. Net sales dipped in the quarter from $230.3 million in the third quarter 2023 to $219.6 million.

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