NestlŽ officials from Switzerland, California, and Ohio joined NestlŽ employees in Jonesboro AR to welcome guestsÑ including Arkansas Gov Mike Huckabee and Jonesboro Mayor Hubert BrodellÑto the company's new Jonesboro manufacturing facility. Officials dedicated the new facility, which has been in operation since March 2003, making Stouffer's and Lean Cuisine frozen prepared meals.
The $165 million investment in a 325,000-square-foot production facility, announced by NestlŽ in July 2001, was the largest capital investment ever undertaken by the company. The project also includes an arrangement with Millard Refrigerated Services, which has partnered with NestlŽ to provide product distribution and logistics services in its new, nearly 200,000-sq-ft facility. Millard's warehouse provides temperature-controlled storage for incoming ingredients and finished product.
Manufacturing of the first Stouffer's and Lean Cuisine products in Jonesboro began in March 2003. The facility's second production line began operating in late September 2003; nearly 400 employees are now employed at the Jonesboro facility. When fully operational, the NestlŽ Prepared Foods Co expects to employ 1,000 at this facility.