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Sierra Nevada chooses NC for East Coast expansion

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RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- West Coast craft beer-maker Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. is opening a production site in North Carolina to expand its East Coast reach.

The Chico, CA-based company said Wednesday it's chosen a site along the French Broad River 12 miles south of Asheville as the home of its East Coast brewery.

Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman says the mountain region's beer culture, water quality and quality of life were right for his company.

Sierra Nevada says its Mills River brewery is expected to employ about 90, with more working in an attached restaurant. The brewery is expected to open by early 2014.

State legislators last year changed laws to allow larger beer-makers to sell their product on site, a move aimed at attracting Sierra Nevada and another brewer eyeing the region.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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