Niagara Bottling, LLC , the largest family-owned, private-label manufacturer of bottled water in the United States, and the City of Missouri City hosted an invitation-only Grand Opening and Open House at the company’s newly constructed 357,000 square-foot facility, on Friday, July 12, as Niagara officially “opens for business” in the Show Me City.
With community participation from the high-stepping Mighty Eagle Band from Willowridge High School, the Missouri City Police Color Guard, Wharton Boy Scout Troop Number 499, several businesses from the Missouri City/Fort Bend area, Local, State and Federal dignitaries, and Niagara Bottling’s Executive Leadership Team, a ceremony, culminating with a ribbon cutting, was held in front of the facility.
Almost 250 people attended the event in Lakeview Business Park. Attendees were also given an opportunity to tour the plant and see the latest bottling technology. According to Niagara officials, the plant has a capacity to make 1,350 water bottles a minute, 81,000 bottles an hour and 2.3 to 2.5 million bottles each day at the new facility that now has two bottling lines in production. Niagara’s operations are totally vertically integrated—meaning the company makes its own bottles and closures in addition to filling, palletizing and distributing the product to grocery retailers, club stores, big box retailers, hotels, and other companies across the country.
During the celebration, Niagara President & CEO Andy Peykoff, II spoke about his father, who founded the company. “Andrew Peykoff, Senior, Founder and current Chairman of the Board of Directors, came to the United States from Macedonia in 1963 when he was 25 years old and settled in California. He began as a milkman and later became a water man. Mr. P., as he is known throughout the company, went door-to-door selling water in five-gallon, glass containers for home and office delivery.”
In the early 1990’s, Niagara expanded into offering single-serve, private-label bottled water for grocery and convenience stores, as well as wholesale customers with the focus on offering an unmatched combination of quality, price, and service. Throughout the following decade, Niagara’s significant developments in vertical integration, innovative bottle design, and high speed manufacturing positioned the company as the industry leading private label bottled water supplier in the Western United States. In 2002, Andy Peykoff, II became President & Chief Executive Officer. Under his command, the company has established itself as a national leader in high-quality, affordable bottled water with geographically diversified production facilities throughout the United States. Niagara is the industry leader for light weighting, package innovation and other eco-sustainability initiatives.
According to Peykoff, Sr.: “We produce the lightest bottles in the world with the least carbon footprint. We are proud that Niagara leads the way in every green initiative including lightweight bottles, and lightweight caps.” He went on to explain that the “bottles weigh one-third of what they did just a few years ago. We are also the most energy efficient. We developed nested packaging that does not include cardboard and that saves 900,000 trees a year. Our bottles are also 100 percent recyclable.”
Mayor Allen Owen praised Staff members, including City Manager Edward Broussard, Assistant City Manager Scott Elmer and former Economic Development Coordinator Bob Graf for their work in helping to convince Niagara officials to open their business doors in the “Show Me City”.
“We’re behind you 100 percent,” Owen said. “We had to compete against different states and cities to get you here and we wanted to show you what the “Show Me City” can do. For many years Missouri City was a bedroom community. Your business is something we’ve wanted for a long time, and provides a workplace and jobs for our residents.” He continued, “I love seeing Missouri City on your water bottles. When Costco opens its new store in Sugar Land, it will be selling Niagara water, so the people in Sugar Land can drink Missouri City water.”
Other dignitaries in attendance included: Mayor Pro Tem Jerry Wyatt, and Council Members Don Smith, Floyd Emery, and Yolanda Ford; Meadows Place Mayor Charles Jessup, Rosenberg Mayor Vincent Morales, Fort Bend County Commissioners Grady Prestage and James Patterson; Aaron Demerson, Executive Director of Economic Development & Tourism, from the offices of Gov. Rick Perry, State Rep. Ron Reynolds; Loveless Mitchell, from the office of State Sen. Rodney Ellis, Board Members from the Water Control & Improvement District No. 2 and U.S. Congressman Al Green, among others.
Congressman Green lauded the company’s 50th anniversary celebration. “America is the greatest country to live in and we are proud to have Niagara Bottling locate in Missouri City,” he said. Green also paid tribute to the company and what its presence means for Missouri City, including new jobs for residents.
State Rep. Ron Reynolds said, “You have chosen the greatest city in the greatest state in the greatest country. It’s also the best County and this is just the beginning.”
Finally, Commissioner Grady Prestage also welcomed Niagara Bottling to Missouri City. “You’ve heard whiskey is for drinking and water is worth fighting for,” said Prestage. “I want Niagara to know that Missouri City is the best city in the State to locate in.”
Niagara currently employs 92 and has a Phase I target of 103 employees.
Last year, Missouri City’s commitment to private-public partnerships was recognized with the prestigious 2012 Community Economic Development Award from the Texas Economic Development Council. The “Show Me City” won the distinction for its successful bid to attract Niagara to the area. In making its decision, TEDC cited Missouri City’s “team effort” in partnering with the Greater Houston Partnership, the Fort Bend Economic Development Council, Fort Bend County, CenterPoint Energy Economic Development Group and Water Control and Improvement District No. 2.