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Harpoon will use Citizens loan to expand its Boston brewery

 Citizens Financial Group Inc., which may be best known locally for Citizens Bank, said its commercial division has completed a $3.5 million loan to Harpoon Brewery, which the company plans to use to expand its brewery in Boston’s Seaport District.

The financing will enable Harpoon to buy and install new bottling and labeling machinery that will run at higher speeds than its current equipment, said RBS Citizens, a division of Providence-based Citizens Financial Group.

Since 2008, production at the Harpoon Brewery in Boston has increased from 60,000 barrels a year to 120,000 barrels in 2011, RBS Citizens said. An additional 55,000 barrels a year are produced at the company’s brewery in Vermont.

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RBS Citizens said the financing will also allow Harpoon to renovate and expand the visitor center at its Boston facility. The expansion includes the construction of a new beer hall.

Harpoon said that just over 2,000 people a week visit its Boston brewery.

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