Kerry to expand Jackson plant

Tralee, Ireland-based Kerry Group plc will expand its plant in the Village of Jackson in Washington County, Economic Development Washington County (EDWC) announced last week.

The expansion project will add about 119,000 square feet of space to the company’s existing 165,000-square-foot facility at N168 W21455 Main St. in Jackson, which is at capacity. Construction will begin as early as next week and is expected to be complete in the fall of 2014.

The company plans to add 60 jobs at the plant, the EDWC said. The firm currently has 125 employees there.

“We are very proud of our Jackson facility, which is our first manufacturing plant in the US, and are most appreciative of the long-standing partnership we have with the village, the county and the state,” said Jason Ampe, operations director for Kerry. “We are excited about the future growth opportunities for our company and this wonderful community where we live and work.”

Kerry Group, which has its Kerry Ingredients U.S. headquarters in Beloit, has been doing a company-wide evaluation of facilities to consider expansion options and expansion of the Jackson plant, which is used to convert liquid food ingredients into powder ingredient products, was considered a possibility.

“EDWC leveraged its relationships to get an early understanding of the opportunity and the competitive gaps Jackson and Washington County faced in their bid for this project, which then translated into our team working to craft a collaborative development package that carefully targeted wins for each party involved,” said Christian Tscheschlok, executive director of the EDWC.

Washington County has offered a $480,000 forgivable loan to the company for the project if it meets jobs and new investment criteria. The village will provide $1.8 million in tax incremental financing (TIF) for the project.

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