To meet the growing demand for sanitizing wipes Berry Global plans to invest roughly $70 million to expand its manufacturing plant in Benson, North Carolina. The project is expected to create 63 jobs in Johnston County by the end of 2023.
The company will add new buildings to its campus, additional infrastructure, and an additional production line. The company has been based in Benson since the 1960s and is the town’s largest private employer with more than 215 people working at its plant on 1206 Chicopee Road.
“We’ve been here for over 50 years at this point,” Paul Harmon, EVP North America Commercial & Product Development, Health, Hygiene & Specialties Division, Berry Global told WRAL TechWire. “As we developed plans to expand our footprint, we considered a lot of locations, both in state and out of state.We look forward to continuing our relationship with the City of Benson and the County of Johnston for future investments in the Berry site.”
According to county officials, the economic incentives from the town and county are contingent on the return of Berry Global’s investment that is expected to increase public tax revenue. The incentives will only be given upon the company’s new investment and the taxes paid on it.
“Nothing empowers a person more than a good paying job with a living wage,” Chris Johnson, the economic development manager for Johnson County told WRAL. “Because this company, and now this project, has the ability to transform the working lives of many residents in many generations.”
A study of Berry Global’s investment, once its expansion is operational, found that the return on investment would result in nearly $21.5 million annually for the county’s economy, according to an analysis by Dr. Michael Walden, a North Carolina State University economist, on behalf of the county.
“These jobs and ancillary job growth are projected to be over $5.2 million annually,” added Johnson. The grant is a seven-year cascading cash grant, as proposed. “This project will allow the county and the town to seek other grants at federal and state level for further job growth.”
The international Fortune 500 company, headquartered in Evansville, Indiana, makes plastic packaging and nonwoven fabrics, including disinfectant wipes. The company’s presence in North Carolina includes 1,200 people at facilities in Ahoskie, Charlotte, Matthews, Mooresville, Rocky Mount and Statesville.