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Alabama-Based Milo's Tea Company Plans to Open Owasso Plant in September 2020

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The Macy’s fulfillment center in Owasso is getting a new neighbor: a 108,000-square foot Milo’s Tea Company production and distribution center.

Milo’s Tea CEO Tricia Wallwork said the Tulsa area came out on top as the Birmingham, Alabama-based beverage maker's expansion site after a thorough search for a location in the central United States.

"When we were looking at sites, water — good water — was definitely a factor that we considered. We actually got a tanker truck of Tulsa water and brought it to the plant and made tea with it to make sure. Because, you know, we have nowhere to hide," Wallwork said.

Milo’s will spend $60 million on the new facility center across the street from the Macy’s fulfillment center at Cherokee Extension Industrial Park on 76th Street North. The company plans to open it in September 2020.

Some perks helped push Tulsa County over the top.

"Oklahoma Quality Jobs state statutory program plays into that. Helping them with workforce training with Tulsa Tech also plays into those incentives," said Tulsa Regional Chamber Executive Vice President Justin McLaughlin.

Milo’s executives said the expansion will bring 110 jobs. The chamber expects those will support another 177 jobs in the community.

The company plans to bring along sustainability practices from its Alabama plant. Despite producing more than six tons of spent tea a day, it’s a certified zero-waste facility.

"It makes a wonderful substrate for potting soil. So, we’re donating a lot of that to the community for their composting programs. We’re also doing a lot of research into using it as a component for animal feed," Wallwork said.

The company also seeks out renewable energy sources and repurposes packaging from its plastic caps as trash bin liners.

Milo's distribution increased from 13 to 35 states in 2014, and the company's products are now in 45 states.