ST. LOUIS – Hartwell, Georgia, will be home to a manufacturing and distribution facility for pet products, Nestle Purina PetCare Co. announced Sept. 27. By the end of 2023, the company plans to invest $320 million in the facility, which will be the company’s first new plant in 20 years.

Nestle Purina expects to close on the property later this year, contingent on completion of due diligence and satisfaction of closing conditions. The distribution center will be operational in 2018, with production to follow in 2019. Purina brands include Purina ONE, Dog Chow, Friskies, Tidy Cats and Pro Plan.

John Bear, vice president of manufacturing, Nestle Purina, said, “We’re very excited and look forward to closing on the property and bringing more quality jobs to the state of Georgia, as well as expanding Purina capacity and distribution in the Southeast.”

Purina also plans to create as many as 240 jobs over the next five years at the Hartwell location.

“The Hart County Board of Commissioners is pleased that Nestle Purina PetCare has chosen our community to expand their manufacturing operations,” said Joey Dorsey, chairman of the Hart County Board of Commissioners. “We see the company’s decision in selecting Hart County as reinforcement of our long-term vision and actions in supporting industry, agriculture, tourism, and the community’s continuing emphasis on workforce development.”