I.F.P. to build new juice processing plant in Pennsylvania

by FoodBusinessNews.net Staff
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HARRISBURG, PA. — I.F.P. North America Inc. plans to build a $65 million aseptic multi-fruit processing and juice packaging plant in the Erie, Pa., company and state officials announced Friday. The 300,000-square-foot facility will be located on the former Kaiser Aluminum site and will utilize state-of-the-art aseptic processing and packaging equipment and related technology.

I.F.P. will produce and supply premium quality fruit juices, juice blends and not-from-concentrate fruit juices to the retail, food service and industrial bulk industries. Upon completion, the Erie facility will be the first plant built in at least 15 years to provide a complete single site multi-fruit processing and juice packaging operation, company officials said.

"Erie was the obvious choice for the location of our new cutting-edge technology facility," said Herbert W. Fiss, chairman and chief executive officer. "This area of northwestern Pennsylvania not only provides access to proven and established fruit growing regions, but is also within a 500-mile radius of the largest fruit juice beverage consumer market in the nation."

One of the company's signature products to be produced at the Erie plant is not-from-concentrate apple juice, made from apples grown only in the United States. The product was developed exclusively for I.F.P. by Cornell University food science and technology researchers.

The project will also provide an opportunity for I.F.P. to operate the Erie plant within the parameters of a U.S. Patent that was issued and licensed to the company.

Founded in January 2002, I.F.P. produces and supplies fruit juices, juice blends and not-from-concentrate fruit juices for brand companies and as private label products of store brand companies. The new Erie plant is the first aseptic multi-fruit processing and juice packaging facility owned by the company.

Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development offered the company a $3.15 million financial package that includes a $2.75 million in loans, a $200,000 grant and $200,000 in job training assistance. I.F.P. is also eligible to apply for a $7.5 million loan through the state’s Citizens Job Bank program.

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