HOLLAND, MICH. — Request Foods, Inc., a co-manufacturer of custom entrees, side dishes, appetizers, sauces, desserts and other frozen foods, has announced plans to invest $205 million and add nearly 200 new jobs as part of an expansion in Holland.
As part of the investment, Request Foods said it will expand at four locations in Holland, adding more manufacturing capacity, building a cold storage warehouse, constructing a ready-to-eat plant and expanding and upgrading its wastewater treatment plant.
The company currently operates a 350,000-square-foot co-packing facility in Holland and serves customers in the food manufacturing, retail grocery, club store, restaurant chain, hospitality and foodservice industries.
“Request Foods is excited to continue our history of successful growth in West Michigan, by investing over $200 million during the next few years in four major projects in Holland Charter Township,” said Menaka Abel, chief financial officer at Request Foods. “Our investment is expected to create up to 198 new jobs, with most of our new team members residing in Ottawa County (Holland Township). While we received enticing offers to expand in other states, our commitment to Michigan, coupled with our desire to ensure Holland is recognized as an area of choice to live and work, precipitated our decision to expand locally. We are grateful for the cooperation we have received from Holland Charter Township, Ottawa County and the State of Michigan officials — along with the support we have received from Lakeshore Advantage and our partners at Warner Norcross + Judd, which enabled us to bring our expansion plans to fruition.”
To support the project, the Michigan Strategic Fund has approved the following incentives:
• A $2 million performance-based grant from the Michigan Business Development Program.
• An Agriculture Renaissance Zone with an estimated value of $11 million for the RTE facility.
• $6.9 million in Community Development Block Grant funds to Holland Charter Township for machinery and equipment needed for the RTE facility and the Greenly Street expansion.
Request Foods said it chose Michigan over competing sites in South Carolina.
The entire expansion project is expected to take two years.Request Foods began as the prepared entrees division of Bil Mar Foods, one of the nation’s largest turkey processors. When Bil Mar was bought by Sara Lee in 1988, a group of investors, led by Jack DeWitt, purchased the division and launched Request Foods.