Purina Opens New Factory in Georgia
The Hartwell factory represents Nestlé’s single largest investment in a pet care facility in the last decade in the United States, Canada and Latin America.
Nestlé Purina PetCare Co.
Nestlé Purina PetCare Co. recently celebrated the opening of its 21st U.S. factory in Hartwell, Ga. The new factory represents a $320 million investment, which aims to have a significant impact on the local economy as well as to boost the capacity to meet the growing demand for Purina pet foods, according to company officials. Growth of the wet cat food category and demand for Purina pet foods is a primary driver of Purina’s Hartwell investment, officials said.
The Hartwell factory is Purina’s first new U.S. factory in two decades, and represents Nestlé’s single largest investment in a pet care facility in the last decade in the United States, Canada and Latin America. Currently, nearly 200 employees work at the Hartwell facility, and the number will grow to 240 as new lines and other expansions at the site are completed over the next few years, according to company officials. Purina also operates a manufacturing facility in Fairburn, Ga., which employs 350 people.
“I am proud to congratulate Purina on the opening of their 21st U.S. factory in Hart County,” said Georgia Governor Brian P. Kemp. “As one of the nation’s leading pet food companies, Purina’s expansion into Hartwell and continued commitment in Fairburn are creating exciting opportunities for hardworking Georgians and their families, and I am grateful for their investment in our state. I am excited to see another member of the Georgia Made family grow their operations, and I have no doubt that our top-notch workforce will ensure Purina’s continued success in the years ahead.”
Purina announced its investment in Hartwell in 2017 and began initial operations of a distribution center at the site in spring 2018. The company purchased a long-idled textile facility that it set out to completely remake and rebuild with the installation of modern equipment and technology for high-quality production of trusted Purina brands including Fancy Feast, officials said.
“Nestlé Purina is focused on delivering world-class products and is one of our key growth pillars for Nestlé,” said Laurent Freixe, Nestlé CEO for the Americas. “Purina is in a position of strength for long-term sustainable growth and this investment in Hartwell demonstrates Nestlé’s commitment to continually innovate and shape the future of pet care.”
Purina has made major investments in Hartwell to ensure the company is producing healthy and high-quality products while protecting the environment, officials said. The Hartwell factory is using innovative water conservation and treatment methods, aims to be powered by 100 percent renewable electricity in the near future and currently sends zero waste for disposal to traditional landfills, instead utilizing composting, recycling and energy recovery, officials added.
Purina also has invested in the local economy and community by actively supporting local pet shelters and rescues, education, civic causes and hunger relief, officials said.
“Purina has quickly become a very important member of our community,” said Brandon Johnson, mayor of the city of Hartwell. “The close proximity of the Purina facility to the city of Hartwell provides significant benefit to the local economy, tremendous career opportunities for our citizens and charitable outreach to local philanthropic organizations.”
During the opening ceremony, Purina also announced a $20,000 donation to the Northeast Georgia Council on Domestic Violence (NGCDV) as part of its Purple Leash Project, a partnership between Purina and national nonprofit RedRover.
“One in three women and one in four men will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime, yet nearly 50 percent of domestic abuse survivors say they won’t leave or will delay leaving an abusive relationship if they can’t bring their pets,” officials said. “Purina and RedRover are working to help make sure they won’t have to face that difficult decision.”