Pinnacle paid Unilever US$580m for US salad dressings arm

Pinnacle paid Unilever US$580m for US salad dressings arm

US group Pinnacle Foods is to expand a plant in Illinois to produce the Wish-Bone and Western salad dressings it acquired from Unilever earlier this year.

Pinnacle will extend the site in St. Elmo in Illinois as it seeks to bring production of the two brands in-house.

The move will see 90 jobs created at the facility, which already manufactures Mrs Butterworth's and Log Cabin syrup, as well as Open Pit barbecue sauce.

"The efficiencies we expect to generate at this new facility will enable us to invest and to reinvigorate the iconic Wish-Bone brand," Tony Fernandez, Pinnacle's supply chain officer, said.

Pinnacle qualifies for grants and tax incentives worth US$2.7m, state officials said.

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Governor Quinn Announces Pinnacle Foods Expansion 
Company to Add Approximately 90 Jobs in Fayette County



ST. ELMO – Governor Pat Quinn today announced that Pinnacle Foods Inc., a leading grocery manufacturer, will expand its plant in Fayette County and double its workforce in the first half of 2015. The company plans to add about 90 jobs at the location, where it will spend more than $40 million to buy equipment and make other improvements to bring the production of its salad dressings in-house. Today’s announcement is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to create jobs and drive Illinois’ economy forward.

“This decision by Pinnacle is a tremendous show of support for Fayette County and Illinois,” Governor Quinn said. “The company understands that being in Illinois makes all the difference in its business plan. Pinnacle can tap into our state’s qualified labor force, unparalleled expertise in manufacturing, and location at the center of North American commerce.”

The St. Elmo plant employs 85 people and manufactures Pinnacle’s Mrs. Butterworth’s and Log Cabin syrup brands and Open Pit barbecue sauces. With the expansion, it will add the Wish-Bone and Western salad dressing labels, both acquired from Unilever in Oct. 2013. Pinnacle identified St. Elmo as the best location for the integration, given its geographic location and proven expertise in liquid filling and processing.

“Pinnacle Foods is pleased to be expanding in Illinois and adding capacity for the salad dressings business in our St. Elmo facility,” Tony Fernandez, Executive Vice President and Chief Supply Chain Officer at Pinnacle Foods said. “The efficiencies we expect to generate at this new facility will enable us to invest and to reinvigorate the iconic Wish-Bone brand. We would like to thank Governor Quinn, Fayette County, and the city of St. Elmo for their support and help with our plans for this very important expansion.”

The company qualifies for grants and tax incentives from the State of Illinois and assistance from the City of St. Elmo and Fayette County. “We are thrilled that Pinnacle Foods continues to place their vote of confidence in our city and wants to continue to invest in their plant in St. Elmo for future growth,” St. Elmo Mayor Ernie Myers said. “Pinnacle Foods has a very strong manufacturing base and a strong work force in St. Elmo. We are pleased that this expansion will mean more good jobs for St. Elmo and the surrounding area.”

The state’s incentives package is worth approximately $2.7 million. It includes tax credits under the Economic Development for a Growing Economyprogram, or EDGE, additional credits for expanding in an enterprise zone, and a grant to the City of St. Elmo for related infrastructure improvements. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) administers the incentives package.

“We are proud to have a role in Pinnacle Foods’ investment. It shows what can happen when the pro-growth policies of Illinois work together with local communities dedicated to creating jobs,” said DCEO Director Adam Pollet.

Original source: Illinois State Government