Nestle Poking Around Upstate New York for New Water Sources

According to Schenectady’s Daily Gazette newspaper, Nestle just received permission to drill test wells in the Johnstown watershed in its search for yet another bottling site.

It’s odd to see their expansion plans continuing in the face of an industry-wide slowdown (Nestle laid off 78% of the workers at its Calistoga plant), yet Nestle’s clearly making a move in the area:

Nestle Waters North America, owner of Poland Spring, Deer Park and other brands of spring water, will drill wells in the Johnstown watershed as part of its exploration for a new bottling site.

The Johnstown Common Council voted unanimously this week to give the company permission to drill wells near the city reservoirs located in the Adirondack foothills northwest of the city.

Nestle Waters, which also owns Perrier, is testing water at a number of sites nationally, including on the Canajoharie watershed in Ephratah where drilling began last summer.

The Canajoharie watershed nearly abuts the Johnstown watershed.

Mayor Sarah J. Slingerland said the company will test for quality and volume. She said she expects drilling to begin in the near future.

Unfortunately, the area’s economic development entity – like so many before them – is buying into Nestle’s promises, hook, line and sinker:

Lisa McCoy, marketing director of the Fulton County Economic Development Corp., said Nestle will choose a site and set up a plant that could employ between 50 and 300 people depending on water volume.

Given Nestle’s dismal record of meeting employment promises elsewhere, does anyone want to guess which number (50 or 300) is the more realistic – especially once the non-local “management teams” are helicoptered in to dole out the sub-living-wage jobs to locals?

I left a comment beneath the newspaper story (it required a very short registration process). If you have a minute, consider leaving one too. The more the folks of Johnsontown hear from others who are dissatisfied with Nestle’s presence in their own towns, the better informed they’ll be.

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3 thoughts on “Nestle Poking Around Upstate New York for New Water Sources

  1. Check out a study done for the McCloud, CA folks which states that a Nestle plant will employ one-half of one percent of local people. They will search nation wide to fill the high quality jobs.

  2. Do you mean the EcoNorthwest report? It suggests that Siskiyou County won’t see a reduction in unemployment rates, and given the industry’s track record of bringing in outside workers to occupy better-salaried positions, that small towns don’t benefit from all the jobs offered.

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