Ferrero North America, part of the global confectionery company Ferrero Group, plans to expand its chocolate processing and product manufacturing plant in Bloomington, Illinois. The $214.4 project is expected to create 200 jobs over the next four years.
The 169,000-square-foot addition will be dedicated to producing Kinder Bueno, a popular Ferrero premium chocolate bar in Europe that launched in the U.S. in 2019, according to company officials. Construction is projected to start by Fall 2022 and operations in 2024.
"The investments we're making in Bloomington are fueling continued growth for Ferrero in North America and are also creating important job opportunities in the community," said Todd Siwak, President and Chief Business Officer of Ferrero North America. "We are thrilled to continue growing here with the invaluable support of the City of Bloomington, McLean County, and the State of Illinois."
The new expansion will be one of the largest production lines built by Ferrero outside of Europe. The announcement comes months after the company broke ground on a chocolate processing facility at the same location, which is set to begin operating in 2023.
"We are elevating the treating experience with Kinder Bueno's unique mix of flavors and textures and American consumers have really embraced that," said Catherine Bertrac, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Kinder at Ferrero North America. "Being able to make Kinder Bueno right here in North America will help us build on our tremendous momentum and continue meeting consumer demand."
Ferrero has made significant investments in North America, including the expansion of its North American headquarters in New Jersey and establishing new distribution centers in Pennsylvania, Arizona and Georgia. Last fall in Bloomington, the company broke ground on its first ever chocolate processing facility outside Europe, and earlier this year announced an expansion of operations at its plant in Brantford, Ontario.