Good-bye, Viagra; hello, kombucha: The old Pfizer plant on Flushing Avenue will soon become a booming culinary production facility. In fact, Grub Street has learned that Kombucha Brooklyn, Brooklyn Soda Works, and Steve's Ice Cream have already signed the leases and taken up shop
The eight-story, 660,000-square-foot Williamsburg plant was originally eighty-sixed in 2008... The building's unique (FDA-approved) facilities are ideal for food production. For example, KBBK will be able to brew tea and store live cultures for its kombucha at a specific, controlled range of temperatures.
The plan has at least one well-known supporter, Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz. His office e-mailed the following statement to us:
Losing Pfizer was a big blow to Brooklyn but I was determined to make sure that this building continued to provide high quality jobs to Brooklynites... Like Pfizer, these companies are starting small, but one day they may be as big or even bigger than Pfizer and they will never turn their back on their place of birth, Brooklyn, U.S.A.It's not like Pfizer was going to keep the Brooklyn site open forever -- I assume that there was a great deal of emotional attachment to the site that allowed it to remain open as long as it had. Also, using it as a tea-brewing facility is better than nothing. A job making tea is better than no job at all.
But there's something vaguely distressing about a business class doesn't sees the manufacturing sector as a place to make money. Sometimes I wonder if they see it at all.