New Berlin-based ice cream ingredient and inclusion manufacturer Denali Ingredients Inc. is preparing to break ground late this spring on an expansion that would triple the size of its research and development facility at 2400 S. Calhoun Road to 4,000 square feet.
The project will also double the size of the cooler space, add 4,000 square feet of office space, and expand its parking lot, according to president Neal Glaeser.
In addition, he said Denali Ingredients is planning a second phase of expansion in the near future that would double the facility’s hot processing production center. That is likely to be combined with another undisclosed building project.
The first phase of the $5 million project is expected to be completed by late fall or early winter. Oconomowoc-based Oliver Construction Co. is the design/build firm.
“We like to be a company that our customers come to do research and development for unique concepts and flavors,” Glaeser previously told BizTimes Milwaukee of the expanded research and development space.
According to Glaeser, research and development is important right now, in a time when the ice cream industry is meeting an array of challenges.
For instance, he said national ice cream retail sales have been down or flat for the last four to five years for a variety of reasons, including a move toward smaller pack sizes as a result of millennials marrying and starting families later.
Denali Ingredients is a sister company of Wayland, Mich.-based Moose Tracks ice cream flavor developer Denali Flavors Inc. Denali Ingredients employs 80, and serves the ice cream, novelty, fluid dairy, bakery and food service markets.
The company makes 650 different items per year for its approximately 350 customers, most of which are located in North America. It manufactures the products in its 80,000-square-foot and 30,000-square-foot plants. (The second plant is located nearby at 3100 S. 166th St.)