ConAgra Foods Inc. (NYSE: CAG) has announced plans to expand its popcorn operations in Rensselaer. The company says it will invest nearly $9 million in the project and add up to 80 jobs by 2015. The announcement comes on the same day the company broke ground on a distribution center in Frankfort, which is also expected to employ nearly 80.
June 11, 2014
Rensselaer, Ind. — ConAgra Foods (NYSE:CAG), one of North America's largest packaged foods companies, announced plans today to expand its operations here, creating up to 80 new jobs by 2015.
The Omaha, Neb.-based company will invest $8.9 million to renovate and equip its current 122,000 square-foot facility in Rensselaer. The expansion is expected to begin construction in August, with work anticipated to be complete by early next year. The company is expanding its popcorn operations at the facility.
“Popcorn production and packaging has continued to expand here in Indiana, made possible by a Hoosier business climate ripe for growth,” said Governor Mike Pence. “With more than 220 million pounds of popcorn produced each year in the Hoosier State, the second leading popcorn-producing state in the nation, it is easy to see why ConAgra Foods is choosing to grow its popcorn operations right here in Indiana. As new investment continues across our state, Indiana is proving time and again that we are a state that works for business.”
ConAgra Foods, which currently employs about 36,000 employees around the world, including approximately 1,100 in Indiana, plans to begin hiring in July and continue through October. Interested applicants may apply through the careers page at ConAgraFoods.com.
“Expanding our operations in Indiana will help us meet the needs of our customers and operate as effectively and efficiently as possible,” said Mike Tracy, senior vice president of supply chain. “We are pleased with the state and local partnerships we have developed and we look forward to working together in the future.”
Founded in 1919 as Nebraska Consolidated Mills, ConAgra Foods produces branded and private brand foods. Its balanced portfolio includes consumer brands found in 99 percent of America’s households, the largest private brand packaged food business in North America and a strong commercial and foodservice business. The Fortune 500 company, which has net annual sales totaling approximately $18 billion, currently operates four production facilities across Indiana, including in Rensselaer, Brookston and two facilities in Indianapolis.
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered ConAgra Foods Packaged Foods, LLC up to $810,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company's job creation plans. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. The city of Rensselaer will consider additional incentives at the request of the Jasper County Economic Development Organization.
“ConAgra Foods is a great company and this expansion project is exciting news for Rensselaer,” said Rensselaer Mayor Stephen A. Wood. “The company and the community have developed a wonderful partnership over many years and we look forward to supporting ConAgra Foods’ continued success in Rensselaer.”
Today’s announcement follows a groundbreaking ceremony held this morning for ConAgra Foods’ new 1.6 million square-foot distribution center in Frankfort, creating 76 new jobs by 2015. The new facility will allow the company to accommodate its existing distribution center in Lebanon, Ind. and provide flexibility to accommodate future expansions.
About ConAgra Foods
ConAgra Foods, Inc. (NYSE: CAG) is one of North America's largest packaged food companies with branded and private branded food found in 99 percent of America's households, as well as a strong commercial foods business serving restaurants and foodservice operations globally. Consumers can find recognized brands such as Banquet, Chef Boyardee, Egg Beaters, Healthy Choice, Hebrew National, Hunt's, Marie Callender's, Orville Redenbacher's, PAM, Peter Pan, Reddi-wip, Slim Jim, Snack Pack and many other ConAgra Foods brands, along with food sold by ConAgra Foods under private brand labels, in grocery, convenience, mass merchandise, club and drug stores. Additionally, ConAgra Foods supplies frozen potato and sweet potato products as well as other vegetable, spice, bakery and grain products to commercial and foodservice customers. ConAgra Foods operates ReadySetEat.com, an interactive recipe website that provides consumers with easy dinner recipes and more. For more information, please visit us at www.conagrafoods.com.
Created in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Mike Pence. Victor Smith serves as the Indiana Secretary of Commerce and Eric Doden is the president of the IEDC.
The IEDC oversees programs enacted by the General Assembly including tax credits, workforce training grants and public infrastructure assistance. All tax credits are performance-based. Therefore, companies must first invest in Indiana through job creation or capital investment before incentives are paid. A company who does not meet its full projections only receives a percentage of the incentives proportional to its actual investment. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.