In 1845, Hiram Ricker founded Poland Spring.  He was a forward thinker, and began to market drinking water.  Many thought him crazy for believing people would actually pay for something they could find free in most places.

Today, over $100 billion is spent on bottled water each year and Poland Spring — now a subsidiary of Nestle — has a large share of the international market.

The original spring has been preserved, where the “The Source” is protected in a locked building, but just down the road is an enormous bottling facility, one of several in the state. While some of the water comes from local springs, much of it is trucked in from other sources.

The Poland facility opened in 1975 and currently encompasses over 500,000 square feet of commercial space. There are 11 bottling lines that fill various sized containers, and trucks back up along a span of 51 doors to load up day and night. 

The Poland Spring plant has about 300 workers year round and 360 during peak summer production. The average tenure of employees is 15 years; there are over 70 employees who have worked there over 15 years.

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