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dynamic, young population of 48,400 men and women with more
than 1.1 million workers available within a 30-mile radius. Solano
Community College in Fairfield offers a mechatronics certificate
program that produces job-ready students with technical skills able
to handle complex maintenance and operations tasks required in
City officials are accessible, very supportive of manufacturing
and have a streamlined permitting process. This allows for reduced
development review and processing times, making it as quick and
easy as possible to build a plant.
Those elements influenced snack food manufacturer, Calbee
America, Inc., a Japanese snack food manufacturer that makes
Snapea Crisps, Shrimp Flavored Chips and Lentil Snaps, when
it was searching for a site in 2006 to move its 10,000-square
foot Sebastopol plant located 45 miles away in Sonoma County.
Calbee’s president at the time, Masanori Yasunaga, said he looked
at sites throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, from north of
Santa Rosa and south to Fremont, a distance of approximately 75
miles, and chose Fairfield because its location near major freeways
offered a good distribution point.
In 2007, Calbee completed construction on a 40,000-square
foot facility, four times larger than its plant in Sonoma County,
and offering the ability to expand by 35,000-square feet. In
interviews following his move to Fairfield, Yasunaga said his
decision was influenced by the excellent transportation access,
and consistently noted that the city’s water quality and supply,
a critical element in the manufacturing process, influenced his