28 Sep 2017 --- Nestlé Purina PetCare Company has announced that it is to open a factory and distribution center in Hartwell, Georgia, US. The Hartwell site will be Purina’s 21st factory in the US and the first new factory there in 20 years.
The company says the plant in the southeast US will create as many as 240 new jobs over the next five years. It plans to invest US$320 million in the facility between now and 2023.
Operations to begin soon
“Initially, the site will be a distribution center for Purina’s high-quality pet food products produced at other Purina factories,” explains Keith Schopp, Nestlé Purina spokesperson, talking to FoodIngredientsFirst. “We expect to begin distribution center operations in 2018 and expect to begin producing pet food at the facility in 2019.”
Schopp adds that most of the product will be sold locally throughout Georgia and the Southeast, although Nestlé Purina expects a small percentage may be sold in Canada, Latin America and other overseas markets where Purina products are sold.
The site will help Purina continue its goal of enriching the lives of pets and people, expanding capacity and distribution in the Southeast of the United States. Leading Purina brands include Purina ONE, Dog Chow, Friskies, Tidy Cats and Pro Plan.
“Georgia is very pro-business and important agriculturally,” says Schopp of the state’s benefits. “The region offers appealing benefits for future employees and offers a great talent pool, connected resources and from a business perspective, the region also has a great distribution network.”
The investment is in line with Nestlé’s strategy to increasingly focus capital spending on advancing the high-growth food and beverage categories of coffee, petcare, infant nutrition and bottled water.
Nestlé Purina also insists that the factory will apply Nestlé principles on environmental impact.
“Our mission is to create richer lives for pets and the people who love them, and this includes stewarding resources for future generations,” Schopp says of Nestlé’s sustainability plans. “We strive for our products to not only be healthy and high-quality but also better for the environment along with their value chain.”
Schopp adds that Nestlé Purina invests in ways to reduce its environmental footprint at its manufacturing facilities by improving its efficiency, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, achieving zero waste to landfill, using renewable energy and being a good steward of water. “We look forward to applying these same principles in Hartwell,” Schopp says.
By Paul Creasy
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