FORSYTH COUNTY, N.C. — Reynolds American officials announced Friday a new electronic cigarette production operation will be coming to their Tobaccoville plant, creating at least 200 jobs.
The plant will produce VUSE, an E-cigarette product manufactured by RJ Reynolds.
Reynolds American CEO and President Susan Cameron said 200 manufacturing jobs will be launched in the next four years. The average starting annual salary will be $40,000.
"We will be investing significantly in new manufacturing equipment and processes at the Tobaccoville facility," Cameron said. "This will enable us to begin production of VUSE in this state."
Cameron declined to disclose the dollar amount of the investment and equipment.
"Today is a day about transformation. Transformation of an industry. Transformation of a manufacturing facility. Transformation of our community and potentially, transformation of our lives," Cameron said.
Cameron also confirmed there will be an expansion at the existing 70,000 sq. ft. plant.
Gov. Pat McCrory said Reynolds made the decision to expand in North Carolina without state incentives.
"This is the best long-term sustainable business decision," McCrory said. "The Carolina comeback continues."
E-cigs are battery-powered devices that heat a liquid nicotine solution in a disposable cartridge and create a vapor that is inhaled.
In June 2013, as Reynolds was introducing VUSE distribution in Colorado — its first statewide retail presence — the company said that the cartridges are made in Kansas and the nicotine liquid that produces the vapor is made at its Winston-Salem research and development facilities.
Reynolds said at the time that production could be added at Tobaccoville if warranted by consumer demand.
Vuse is sold statewide in Colorado and Utah, as well as in select Tarheel Tobacco shops in the Triad. The company plans to begin national distribution by late June.