Virginia – Certified Origins to Invest in Newport News

Governor Glenn Youngkin Announces Certified Origins to Invest $25 million to Establish First U.S. Olive Oil Production Facility in City of Newport News

~ Operation will incorporate olive oil blending, bottling, packaging, and distribution, creating 30 new jobs ~

RICHMOND, VA (STL.News) Governor Glenn Youngkin announced that Certified Origins, an Italy-based company focused on providing fresh and authentic extra virgin olive oil, will invest $25 million to establish its first U.S. production facility in the City of Newport News to meet increased demand for its branded and private-label products.  The company’s new operation at 230 Pickett’s Line in the Oakland Industrial Park will select and import high-quality extra virgin olive oils through The Port of Virginia to offer craft blends and tailored packaging solutions for local and global markets. Virginia successfully competed with Maryland for the project, which
will create 30 new jobs.

“The Port of Virginia’s strategic investments and transportation infrastructure enable international businesses to easily import, export and distribute their products, making the Commonwealth a prime launch point into the U.S. market,” said Governor Youngkin.  “These logistical advantages and workforce continue to attract high-caliber global companies and we are proud to welcome Certified Origins to Virginia.”

“Certified Origins’ first U.S. production facility in the City of Newport News will enable the company to easily import and distribute its high-quality olive oil products while continuing to build partnerships with retailers across the country,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Caren Merrick.  “The Hampton Roads region has emerged as a hub for the food and beverage sector, and Certified Origins will be a valuable addition to this booming industry.”

“The state of Virginia has an outstanding port, which is a key part of our logistics chain,” said Certified Origins Managing Director Nacho Nuez.  “Having a high-volume, efficient, and state-of-the-art port was a key deciding factor for the location.  Virginia is centrally located in the mid-Atlantic region, which is a great location to support our customers, and we can easily ship to distribution centers by truck or rail from our manufacturing facility or from the port.  The Hampton Roads area has a large pool of skilled workers that we feel would be an ideal fit for our state-of-the-art facility.  The area is also very attractive to potential new employees for its reasonable cost of living, activities, and proximity to Washington, D.C. and the Outer Banks.”

“We welcome Certified Origins to Newport News and the city's growing community of international firms,” said McKinley L. Price, DDS, Mayor, City of Newport News.  “Our location and business climate, as well as our robust and diverse workforce network, educational opportunities, talent pipeline, and community resources make Newport News the perfect site for economic and business success.  We are proud to serve as the home of Certified Origins’ first production facility in the United States and look forward to supporting their continued growth and success.”

“Certified Origins is joining a growing number of companies in the food and beverage sector that are investing in Virginia to establish or expand their operations,” said Stephen A. Edwards, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority.  “We recently expanded our capacity to support growth in this area of business, so The Port of Virginia is well-positioned to help Certified Origins and its peers connect with world markets and grow their business.  We look forward to the benefits this facility will bring to the City of Newport News and collaborating with Certified Origins as we go forward.”

“We are excited that Certified Origins has chosen Newport News as the location to build their first American production facility,” said Senator T. Montgomery “Monty” Mason.  “The Peninsula is an attractive place for both economic development and business expansion with our proximity to The Port of Virginia making the region an ideal spot for imports and exports.  Certified Origins has made a name for themselves by developing high-quality, authentic, and traceable olive oil and I am eager to welcome their brand to our community.”

“This investment from Italy-based Certified Origins really highlights the long history of Newport News as a hub for international commerce and trade,” said Delegate Shelly Simonds.  “We welcome this investment and the jobs coming to our community from a quality company producing quality ingredients.  From start to finish, olive oil is a key ingredient to healthy dinners in so many homes, including mine.  Buon appetito and welcome to Newport News!”

Founded in 2006, Certified Origins is now a well-established international food producer and distributor with branches and distribution in Europe, Asia, Mexico, and the United States.  Certified Origins is the proud owner of the Bellucci Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil brand and can also count on long-term partnerships with great American retailers, thanks to multiple successful private label programs.  Certified Origin's core mission is to contribute to people's enjoyment and health through good food, made by using wholesome, sustainable, and genuine ingredients.

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Newport News and The Port of Virginia to secure the project for Virginia.  Governor Youngkin approved a $125,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist the City of Newport News with the project.  Certified Origins is eligible to receive state benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, and funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.