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T. Marzetti Expands Hart County, Kentucky, Operations

T. Marzetti Co., producer of numerous salad dressings, fruit and vegetable dips, frozen baked goods and specialty brand items, will increase the company’s expansion project from $93 million to $133 million, and add 220 full-time associates to its workforce in Hart County, Kentucky.

After a pause to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, the company is now moving ahead with the 184,500-square-foot expansion, which will create additional manufacturing space. In addition it plans to purchase new equipment to increase dressing and sauce production, add eight new processing kitchens and create several packaging lines to meet growing customer demand. Work on the project has begun and is expected to be completed by July 2022.

“This expansion builds on the partnership that we have enjoyed with the people of Kentucky since our parent company built our first facility here in 2005. Without the good work and commitment to our company-wide goal of ‘being better’ from the more than 500 employees already on site, we would not have the faith to make this investment, the largest in Marzetti’s 100-year history,” said Dave Nagle, chief supply chain officer at Marzetti.

The company, headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, was acquired by Lancaster Colony Corp. in 1969. Lancaster Colony is also the parent company of several other food companies, including Sister Schubert’s Homemade Rolls Inc., which produces frozen dinner rolls at its facility adjacent to the Marzetti operation in Horse Cave.

“As we work to build back our economy and ensure a brighter future for Kentuckians, the same can be said of companies like T. Marzetti Co.,” Governor Andy Beshear said. “This company already announced a substantial expansion this time last year, and its leaders have taken that project a step further to provide even more quality jobs for residents in and around Hart County. I’m glad Marzetti will represent an even greater part of Kentucky’s future, and I thank the company’s leadership for their commitment to the commonwealth.”

To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in February 2020 preliminarily approved a 10-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $2.75 million in tax incentives based on the company’s originally announced investment of $92.8 million and annual targets of creation and maintenance of 140 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 10 years and paying an average hourly wage of $25.72 including benefits across those jobs.

By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.

Additionally, KEDFA approved Marzetti for up to $250,000 in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing. In addition, Marzetti can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network.

“We are excited about T. Marzetti Co.’s expansion in Hart County and how it will continue to benefit not only Hart County, but our entire region,” said John Bunnell, chairman of the Hart County Industrial Authority. “Every dollar invested here will have a positive ripple effect across our local economy as it recirculates through other local businesses and also helps fund our schools, police, fire and other community services.”

Including this updated announcement, Marzetti and Sister Schubert’s have combined to announce approximately $313 million in investment with the creation of more than 780 jobs in Hart County in less than two decades.

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