A natural snack food manufacturer from Europe will invest nearly $42 million to build a new US headquarters in Kentwood, creating up to 185 jobs in the process.
SnackCraft LLC, which is owned by Unismack S.A. of Greece, intends to renovate and install new equipment and machinery at a vacant Kerry Foods facility in Kentwood.
READ MORE: HANKOOK TIRE’S $1.6 BILLION EXPANSION IN CLARKSVILLE WILL ADD 1,200 NEW JOBS
Despite having a global market presence, SnackCraft’s Kentwood facility will be the company’s first in North America.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer said: “This investment by SnackCraft will create long-term economic opportunity in West Michigan’s agribusiness sector and build on our efforts to grow Michigan’s economy, create good-paying jobs, and invest in every region of our great state.”
The Michigan Strategic Fund awarded the company a $1 million performance-based grant through the Michigan Business Development Program for the project, which was chosen over a competing site in Chicago.
READ MORE: GLASSMAKER’S $240 MILLION EXPANSION IN KENTUCKY WILL CREATE 140 NEW JOBS
Unismack, founded in 2008, specializes in the research and development and manufacturing of natural, healthy snack foods.
The Kentwood facility will be a co-packer and contract manufacturer of baked crackers, tortilla chips, single and twin-screw extruded snacks, and pellet snacks. It will be located at 4444 52nd St. SE.
In addition to manufacturing, the site will have R&D facilities, warehousing, and some third-party logistics for its customers.
Need Career Advice? Get employment skills advice at all levels of your career
Unismack founder and CEO Dimitrios Stratakis said the Grand Rapids region “seemed like an obvious choice” for expanding the company’s manufacturing capacity in the U.S.
He also cited direction from economic development agency The Right Place Inc. — which offered $5,000 in in-kind services — in helping to secure the location.
Stratakis said: “There is an abundance of talent and resources here in West Michigan to help us in the next phase of our journey and we’re thankful to the team at the MEDC for their support, insights and guidance along with their partners at The Right Place,”
Follow us on YouTube, Twitter,LinkedIn, and Facebook