US – Wisconsin-based specialty cheesemaker Emmi Roth is seeking to expand its US presence by breaking ground on a new 134,000-square-foot facility in Stoughton.

The facility will serve as the new company’s headquarters and will also be dedicated to packaging operations for bulk cheese, involving turning cheese blocks into slices, crumbles, wedges and chunks.   

It is approximated that the facility will cover 3.3 acres of land and will include a two-story office building and a production facility that includes cold and dry storage and shipping and receiving docks.

Emmi Group, the parent company of Emmi Roth, said the facility will help handle the demand created by Emmi Roth’s purchase of US cheese brand Athena from Kraft Heinz

Emmi Roth, which also has Wisconsin operations in Monroe, Platteville, and Seymour, added that the current HQ in Fitchburg will remain operational until the new one is completed in 2023.

Tim Omer, president and managing director of Emmi Roth, said: “This facility will support Emmi Roth’s recent acquisition of Athenos … which strengthened the company’s long-standing dedication to the specialty cheese industry.”

With the acquisition came the need for more conversion and distribution capabilities, thanks to the tireless efforts of our team, we’re proud to be breaking ground in Stoughton.”

Data from the USDA show that cheese is one of the most consumed food products, owing to its high nutritious value along with the presence of necessary vitamins, proteins, and other nutrients.

From 2000 to 2020, USDA data shows a bump of nearly 23% (from 12.7 pounds to 15.6 pounds) of “American-type” cheese including year cheddar, Colby, cheese curds, Monterey, and jack are each consumed per capita.

As for “other-than-American” cheeses like mozzarella, blues, Swiss cheese, and all the rest, the increase is even higher, up more than 33% between 2000 and 2020. Not including cottage cheese, on average, Americans consume 38.2 pounds of cheese every year.

The high consumption rate of cheese is poised to continue, largely driven by an increase in consumption of fast-food products, such as pasta, pizza, and burger, in different quick-service restaurants (QSRs).

Moreover, the longer shelf life of cheese, rise in disposable income of people, and surge in demand for food products rich in protein content boost the growth of the US cheese market.

According to Allied Markert Research, the U.S. cheese market size valued at US$34.3 billion in 2019, is projected to reach US$45.5 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 5.25% from 2020 to 2027.

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