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WJBD - Local News - Congressman John Shimkus Tours New Country Bob's Plant

Country Bob's Terry Edson (left), gives a tour of the warehouse to Congressman John Shimkus and Shimkus aide Steve Tomaszewski. Photo by Tim Ferguson.

Terry Edson showing Congressman John Shimkus and his aide, Steve Tomaszewski & the bottle-making machine

Country Bob's Building. Photo by Tim Ferguson.

Congressman John Shimkus Tours New Country Bob's Plant

By Tim Ferguson, WJBD News

U.S. Congressman John Shimkus toured the new Country Bob’s manufacturing facility on U.S. Route 51 south of Centralia Monday afternoon.  Country Bob’s moved to it’s new facility in October from it’s plant on South Lincoln, a former National Food Store.

Shimkus was impressed with the new plant and told WJBD News it is always encouraging to visit businesses that are working to better the community and it’s employees. “First of all it’s always good to be in a local community where you have local entrepreneurs that are successful, and not only successful, but also creating jobs, and income and, to some extent, health benefits to folks in the district. That’s, you know, that’s the great thing about being here at Country Bob’s is a success story that you always liked to see," said Shimkus.

Country Bob’s Barbecue sauce began as a hobby for founder Bob Edson in Mt. Vernon and, after initially giving away the sauce to friends, began manufacturing it in 1982 in Irvington with three partners and it has developed into the company it is today, according to Edson’s son, current President, Terry Edson. Country Bob’s is currently available in 35 states including twenty-three hundred Wal-Mart super centers.

The company now even manufactures it’s own bottles according to Edson.  “There were a few times when we came very close to running out of bottles.  And, so we began to do some research and look at what it would cost us to get into a machine and how we would bid, and if we could even do that.  When we moved out here, we sold that old used machine and brought a brand new machine and we’ve increased our capacity now almost two-fold,”said Edson.

Edson also noted, with the new facility, they also have the capacity to manufacture bottles for other companies as well.

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