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Image: Allison Jones
Work/life balance comes easy for Jacobsen with energetic Portuguese water dogs Lykke and Majo and a private swimming hole (that just happens to also source the water for the fledgling sea salt company).
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Image: Allison Jones
Lykke (named for the Norweigian word for lucky) leads the way from the water to Jacobsen's still-under-renovation salt facility, located on the site of a former oyster farm. "While it makes sense for many other businesses to be located in the big city," says Jacobsen, "salt water is our raw material, so this is where we need to be".
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Image: Allison Jones
The grounds of the facility are still littered with white oyster shells, which Jacobsen plans to re-purpose in the future landscape design of the property.
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Image: Allison Jones
Inside the facility, an old weathered window frame serves as the branded banner above the salt-making stations.
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Image: Allison Jones
As he checks his salt pots, Jacobsen explains: “Salt is a forgotten industry on the coast. While I’m excited that we are creating a great product, I’m even more excited about increasing economic opportunities for coastal communities. We’re creating a new industry that didn’t exist here before.” These well-worn, propane-fueled pots will soon be replaced by a single evaporation pan powered by wood chips for increasingly sustainable production.
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Image: Allison Jones
The hub of Netarts is 60-year-old The Schooner restaurant and bar (owned by Barry Boring, Tom Flood, Sr. and Tom Flood, Jr.), where Jacobsen fuels up with meals and pints a few times a week. "It's THE place to be in the Tillamook area," according to Jacobsen. "Locals and visitors hang out at the bar for the great beach food and sunny patio."
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Image: Allison Jones
Yes, Jacobsen carries tins of his own salt with him to restaurants, adding a touch of the sea to The Schooner's loaded corned beef Reuben.
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Image: Allison Jones
"Here on the coast, jobs are really needed," says Jacobsen. "Aside from the Tillamook Cheese Factory (and the dairy farms that support it), fishing, and logging, there’s not a whole lot. It’s exciting to make a tiny dent in that need for local economic opportunities, and I hope it will continue to grow."
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Image: Allison Jones
"When we first moved here, locals thought the project was pretty strange. But I’ve gotten to know a lot of people in town, and ultimately, I want my company to be something that people from the coast, and from the rest of Oregon, can be proud of. I’d be honored if people here considered themselves and their home a part of our story."
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Image: Allison Jones
Jacobsen shows us around another thriving business on Netarts Bay, Mark Wiegardt's Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery, which raises oyster larvae for shellfish growers up and down the west coast. The stuff that looks like mud at right? That's thousands of baby oysters, being filtered and getting ready to grow.
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"I love coming to work out here," says Jacobsen, looking out from his favorite viewpoint above the bay. "I feel tremendously lucky to commute to a waterfront office.”
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