The Kroger Co. planning $19.2 million in upgrades to Kenosha commissary

Employees prepare food at the Roundy's Commissary in Kenosha .

Last updated on July 3rd, 2019 at 07:23 pm

The Kroger Co. is planning to spend $19.2 million to reconfigure and eliminate duplication at the Roundy’s Commissary in Kenosha.

Employees at the Roundy’s Commissary in Kenosha.

The 117,000-square-foot facility located on 17 acres at 5500 52nd St., east of Green Bay Road, was Roundy’s Supermarkets only food manufacturing facility.

Built in 2006, the plant supplies fresh and prepared foods to Roundy’s roughly 150 grocery stores in Wisconsin and Illinois including Pick ‘n Saves, Metro Markets, Copps and Mariano’s.

When Cincinnati-based The Kroger Co.’s acquired Milwaukee-based Pick ’n Save, operator Roundy’s Inc., in December 2015, the commissary was folded into Kroger’s national portfolio of 38 food processing plants. Some speculated the Kenosha commissary would close.

By reconfiguring the plant, duplicative dairy processing operations will be transferred to another processing plant. The company’s prepared soup production lines will be expanded allowing for the production of 50 million pounds of soup annually at the Kenosha commissary, which will be shipped to stores nationwide, according to Kroger’s plans.

Kroger has submitted an application to the First-Ring Industrial Redevelopment Enterprise, Inc. or FIRE, for $7 million for the project.

In 2007, West Allis created FIRE as a community development entity formed to issue tax credits to help finance developments in low-income areas throughout southeastern Wisconsin.

The Kenosha Commissary is located in an area where the poverty rate is 22.7 percent, the median income is 64.6 percent of the area’s median income and the unemployment rate is 1.9 percent higher than the national average, according to documents submitted by Kroger.

The project will retain more than 210 existing jobs and create 15 jobs over three years, according to Kroger.

The project is also seeking a total New Markets Tax Credit allocation of $15 million, which will provide the necessary subsidy needed to move the project forward.

The FIRE advisory board will consider Kroger’s request this afternoon. They are also considering a $7 million allocation to Tri City Bank for a regional small business loan program and a $1 million request from Mandel Development Group for an Aurora Medical Clinic that will be located at the Six Points Crossing development in West Allis.

Mandel Group has already received $7.5 million from FIRE for the Six Points project.

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