Additional Testing to Begin at Former Tannery Site

Wolverine Worldwide has been working diligently with regulators to collect data and develop long-term water solutions for our community, and we promised to keep you informed about our ongoing efforts.

Consistent with this commitment, we want to tell you about additional groundwater, surface water, sediment and soil sampling that will take place over the next few months at our former tannery in Rockford.  Wolverine operated the tannery from the early 1900s until it was closed in 2009, then decommissioned beginning in 2010 under agency supervision.

Wolverine has already conducted testing at the former tannery site, including many soil samples, drilling 42 on-site monitoring wells, and taking more than 165 groundwater samples from the monitoring wells.  Wolverine reported preliminary results from this earlier testing in our blog in November.

The upcoming work is being performed by Wolverine and its consultants pursuant to work plans submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ).

Work kicked off this week with site preparation activities and will take place primarily over the next three months, with a second round of testing this fall.  The work will be overseen by the EPA and MDEQ.  We anticipate that approximately 100 soil samples, 100 groundwater samples, 14 surface water samples and 35 to 70 sediment samples will be taken and assessed for organic compounds, metals, PFAS, and other compounds.  Up to 10 additional monitoring wells may also be added to the site.

Over the next three months, you may see trucks, work crews, warning signs and equipment at the site, which will be fenced off for the duration of the work.  There will also be some work in the White Pine Trail for approximately a week.  We will attempt to complete this work with as little disruption as possible.

In addition, even while testing is still taking place, Wolverine is already moving forward with a plan announced earlier this month to intercept and treat groundwater from the former Tannery site that contains PFOA/PFOS to prevent it from reaching Rum Creek or the Rogue River.  Wolverine expects that the interception and treatment of groundwater at the former tannery site will help reduce PFOA/PFOS levels and is working with MDEQ to develop that plan.

The efforts announced today are examples of Wolverine’s commitment to work diligently with regulators, our neighbors and the surrounding community to address groundwater issues.  Residents with questions or concerns are encouraged to visit our blog at, or to contact the Company directly at 616.866.5627 or

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