ATLANTA — Roughly one year after the grand opening of a $320 million wet pet food facility in Hartwell, Ga., in November 2019, Nestlé Purina PetCare announced Dec. 8 plans to invest another $550 million to expand the facility and its workforce.
New processing and packaging lines, as well as expanded warehouse capacity, will be added to the Hartwell facility to meet growing demand for Purina’s wet pet food brands, the company reported.
Initially, Purina planned to employ 240 people at its Hartwell pet food plant by 2023. The company now expects to employ up to 370 people by the end of 2025. New jobs will include manufacturing and assembly positions from the associate level all the way up to management-level roles.
"It's a pleasure to see a world-renowned company like Nestlé Purina expand their operations in the Peach State," said Georgia Governor Brian Kemp. "Our highly skilled workforce of hardworking Georgians has been critical to attracting new jobs and investment to every corner of the state. I'm excited for what this will mean for Hart County and the surrounding region, and I'm grateful for Nestlé Purina's continued investment in Georgia."
Purina also employs more than 400 people at its dry pet food manufacturing facility in Fairburn, Ga.
Once this latest Hartwell expansion is completed, Purina will have invested a total of $870 million in the plant, which produces several of its flagship wet pet food brands including Fancy Feast cat foods.
"Purina is thrilled to be expanding our operations in Hartwell," said Winston Silva, factory manager for Purina. "Through this investment, we will continue delivering the science-based nutrition pet lovers have come to trust for more than 90 years, with a continued commitment to safety and sustainability in our operations. We're proud to be a part of the Hartwell community and look forward to expanding our Purina family while also continuing to make a positive impact for pets and people in Northeast Georgia."
The pet food company continues to support Georgia communities, also pledging $20,000 to the Northeast Georgia Council on Domestic Violence (NGCDV) in coordination with Purina and RedRover’s Purple Leash Project.
"Only one year after opening their state-of-the-art facility in Hartwell, Nestlé Purina has decided to reinvest in Georgia and in our people," said Pat Wilson, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD). "As a subsidiary of Nestlé, the company joins a long and distinguished list of Swiss businesses that have not only chosen to invest in the state but have become part of the fabric of their adopted communities. As a native of northeast Georgia, this project is especially gratifying, and I want to thank Nestlé Purina for choosing to grow in Hartwell. Additionally, many thanks to Dwayne Dye and our economic development partners in Hart County for helping us win this project."
Purina has heavily invested in new and existing pet food manufacturing facilities this year, including construction of a $550 million plant in Williamsburg Township, Ohio, the renovation of a former brewery in Eden, N.C., in which the company invested $450 million, a $167 million investment to expand its existing facility in Mechanicsburg, Penn., and a $140 million investment to expand its pet food factory in Clinton, Iowa.