Ferrero makes major investment with new US innovation and R&D facilities
A sizeable investment has been made by Ferrero in the US, as it celebrated the opening of its new innovation centre and new regional research and development labs in Chicago, writes Neill Barston.
The business, which is due to feature at our World Confectionery Conference on 5 October with a keynote policy presentation from Francesco Tramontin, has delivered a new 45,000 square foot facility at the historic Marshall Field and Company Building, is strategically significant in bringing together all its national R&D teams.
This will combine a dedicated workforce of around 150 working on key brands including Keebler, Famous Amos, Mother’s, Fannie May, and other brands across the portfolio to be based in its new location which is regarded as a Chicago Landmark, a National Historic Landmark, and has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1978.
“Our new Innovation Centre and R&D Labs here in Chicago reflect Ferrero’s rich heritage and will foster the creativity and culture that Ferrero known for around the world,” said Alanna Cotton, President and Chief Business Officer of Ferrero North America. “Investments like this help us create high-quality, innovative products that will become a special part of Americans’ lives and further drive category growth in confections, cookies, and beyond.”
The investment further expands Ferrero’s footprint in Illinois. The company manufactures Butterfinger and Baby Ruth products at its plant in Franklin Park, and Keebler products on 110th Street in Chicago. The Ferrero manufacturing campus in Bloomington manufactures CRUNCH, 100 Grand, and other products, and will soon include a new chocolate processing facility and a new Kinder Bueno production facility.
“Chicago’s innovation is not only propelling the growth of iconic global brands like Keebler, Famous Amos and Fannie May, but it’s also cementing our city’s reputation as a prime destination for the world’s best talent and businesses,” said Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson. He added “Congratulations to the Ferrero team on this remarkable achievement, and as a big fan of sweets, I look forward to enjoying the next generation of delicious treats that will be made in our great city.”
The ribbon cutting represents just the latest example of Ferrero’s growth and investment in North America over the past few years. In addition to new projects in Illinois, the company invested in new capacity and capabilities for its Brantford, Ontario plant earlier this year and previously added distribution centers in Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Arizona. Ferrero’s North American presence now totals more than 5,000 employees across eight offices and twelve plants and warehouses in the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean.