US – The Kroger Company is investing US$70 million in Tamarack Farms Dairy to expand capabilities and also to accommodate a new aseptic milk product line.

About US$16 million will be used to expand the facility by 35,000 square feet while US$54 million will fund the purchase and installation of new machinery and equipment.

Kroger says the implementation of a state-of-the-art aseptic milk line will enable it to manufacture products with a long shelf life, such as half and half, heavy whipping cream, coffee creamers, and Kroger’s Carbmaster milk beverage.

The new aseptic milk line is part of the company’s efforts to offer more high-quality dairy products to consumers, including delivering longer shelf-life high protein drinks, as well as other dairy and non-dairy products.

Kroger boasted that the new dairy production line at Tamarack Farms will be the first of its kind in the Midwest.

Doug Blacksten, senior director of supply chain and manufacturing at Cincinnati-based Kroger, said “We are so pleased to see this continued investment in Newark, Kroger is ‘Fresh for Everyone’, and that means we are committed to sourcing and manufacturing only the best and freshest products.

“This cutting-edge innovation at Tamarack Farms Dairy underscores that commitment, improving our ability to offer high-quality dairy products to Kroger customers.”

His statement was echoed by Tim Derickson, senior managing director of food and agribusiness of Jobs Ohio, commenting that Kroger’s significant investment transforms the Tamarack Farms Dairy into an aseptic processing facility, creating a new market for Ohio’s dairy industry.

Newark City Council’s finance committee approved an Enterprise Zone agreement with Kroger for the expansion which will begin by Sept. 30 and finish by June 30, 2023.

The enterprise Zone agreement provides the company a 10-year, 75% tax abatement on increased property valuation associated with the 35,000-square foot expansion.

The company said the current 20-acre facility is the “largest fluid dairy product manufacturer in Ohio” and serves around 160 stores across Ohio and West Virginia and manufactures products for Kroger’s e-commerce channel.

During its First quarter of 2022 Results, Kroger reported an increase of 3.8% in sales excluding fuel totaling US$44.6 billion, compared to US$41.3 billion for the same period last year.

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