Credit: Photo courtesy of Woodchuck USA

Credit: Photo courtesy of Woodchuck USA

Woodchuck plans move to Ry-Krisp building, tree planting campaign

Updated: November 13, 2015 - 11:49 am

Woodchuck USA has launched a one for one campaign to plant a tree for every product it sells. 

Just a couple weeks into its “Buy One, Plant One” campaign, the wood product company has already pledged to plant 4,000 trees, said founder and CEO Ben VandenWymelenberg.

Through a partnership with American Forests, Woodchuck plans to plant the trees in Minnesotan forests such as Superior National Forest. Each product now comes with a card detailing where the tree will be planted and how campaign’s current total.

The Marcy-Holmes-based manufacturer started about three years ago with phone cases, but has expanded to wood cufflinks, flasks, intricate wood maps and other gadget accessories. Woodchuck uses American-sourced wood in its products, which can be found at local retailers like MartinPatrick3 and big-box stores like Target and 

Woodchuck is also planning to relocate in January to the former Ry-Krisp building on 6th Avenue and 9th Street in the same neighborhood. The facility, formerly the world’s only Ry-Krisp plant, lost its longtime tenant when a parent company discontinued production of the rye cracker in March.

The 80,000-square-foot building is five times larger than Woodchuck’s current space just a few blocks away near 9th Street and 9th Avenue in Southeast Minneapolis.

Woodchuck’s growing staff of 20 will only use about a third of the space. With all that extra room, VandenWymelenberg said they plan to create a coworking space for innovative startups like American maker companies and up-and-coming brands that need additional resources and wiggle room. VandenWymelenberg said 75 percent of the space is already leased. 

“We think this neighborhood is a good spot to be in and to grow into,” said Hector Cortes, who does marketing for Woodchuck. “Northeast is kind of the spot to be in. It’s hip. It’s trendy.”

Cortes’ video production company is one of several companies  from social media to marketing firms  that Woodchuck will be hosting in its new coworking space. 

Woodchuck will relocate this winter and discontinue production at its current facility. 


Woodchuck’s “Buy One, Plant One” campaign promotion