Monterey Pasta Company announced yesterday [Monday] that it has begun the purchase and installation, over the next twelve months, of US$2.7m in new manufacturing equipment and infrastructure at its Salinas, California plant and a new manufacturing/storage facility located at its satellite distribution location.

The Salinas, California-based company, which has seen its sales climb by 153% since 1997, expects to complete the development of the new plant location by June 2002.

The plan for the new facility will add approximately 40,000ft² of plant and warehouse space adjacent to the 45,000ft² currently at the distribution center, which is three miles from the main Salinas plant. Expenditures, expected to be in the vicinity of US$1.5m, financed entirely from existing cash, will be phased so as to conform to sales milestones and the resulting production needs. The added space will only be partially developed, thereby leaving the space and flexibility for future expansion.

Lance Hewitt, President/CEO of Monterey Pasta said: “Our continuing strong growth is a tribute to our strategy of offering the highest quality, refrigerated gourmet food products to our consumers.

“This expansion reflects our continuing faith in the effectiveness of that strategy.”