As part of the Optimize and Enhance Operations pillar of the its Global Strategic Plan, Saputo Inc. announced several major capital investments and consolidation initiatives intended to enhance and streamline its manufacturing footprint in its USA Sector and International Sector. The planned activities are consistent with the previously announced Global Strategic Plan designed to create shared value for all stakeholders.
In the USA Sector, as a first phase, the Montreal-headquartered company said it plans to invest approximately $169 million toward the modernization and expansion of its cheese manufacturing facilities in Wisconsin and California and to support its growth plan in the retail market segment. These initiatives will begin in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2022 and are expected to take approximately 24 months to implement.
Complementing this first phase, Saputo plans to consolidate the cut-and-wrap activities in its West Coast operations and right-size its footprint by closing its Bardsley Street, Tulare, Calif., facility in fiscal 2023. The impact on employees is expected to be minimal, Saputo said, as opportunities for employment will be available at other Saputo facilities in Tulare.
In the International Sector, the company will be streamlining operations in two of its manufacturing facilities in Australia. A limited number of employees will be impacted. These employees will be provided with severance and outplacement support, Saputo said, and the company is exploring redeployment opportunities for some of the affected employees.
Chicago-based Fairlife LLC, a subsidiary of the Coca-Cola Co., said it surpassed $1 billion in annual retail sales. Founded in 2012, Fairlife has pioneered ultrafiltration in the dairy industry through its portfolio of better-for-you products.
Throughout 2021, Fairlife achieved double-digit sales growth week over week, culminating in the new annual record of more than $1 billion in total U.S. retail sales. The company said it also achieved significant share growth in the value-added dairy category across all top 10 retailers and the No. 1 selling brand spot in the category on Instacart.
Ultimation Industries, Roseville, Mich., said it was named an honoree in the 2021 Best of MichBusiness Awards, an achievement that recognizes the company’s business leadership and its transformation into a global e-commerce provider of conveyor technology and automation. The awards honor companies that made a difference in 2021 and showed outstanding leadership in a time of social and economic uncertainty, according to MichBusiness.
JLS Automation said it is planning an expansion project for its headquarters in York, Pa. The project will focus exclusively on expanding production space to accommodate rapidly growing consumer demand for large automated packaging systems, as well as traditional JLS equipment. At this time, 50,000 square feet will be added to the existing facility, which is just under 100,000 square feet.
With this addition, throughput opportunities will be increased by 60%, the company said. It will also provide more room for integrating large high-speed, multi-robot systems. Additionally, a higher volume of factory acceptance tests will be able to be conducted on-site at JLS, including fully integrated systems. Running these tests on-site helps ensure end-user success before a system ever leaves the door, JLS Automation said, while also reducing the time between the test and operation at the final site.
Bluegrass Ingredients Inc., an R&D-based specialty food ingredients supplier based in Glasgow, Ky., said it achieved Food Safety and Quality Code certification from the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Institute. The recognition underpins the company’s continued commitment to producing ingredients following the highest food safety and quality standards.
The announcement follows three consecutive years of earning “Excellent” ratings through the SQF audit at Bluegrass’ Springfield, Ky., and Glasgow facilities. This year, the locations scored a 99 and 96 out of 100, respectively, the company said.
Remilk, a food startup based in Tel Aviv, secured $120 million in Series B funding, led by New York-based Hanaco Ventures. Remilk said the funding establishes the company as a primary player in the emerging cultivated dairy category and enables it to immediately scale production of its dairy-identical milk protein for commercial use by manufacturers in traditionally dairy-based products, including cheeses, yogurt and ice cream.
Portland, Ore.-based InsightsNow, a behavioral research firm, said it hired Carrie Janot as vice president of marketing. Janot will manage the company's marketing team, accelerating InsightsNow's rapid growth trajectory through strategic marketing initiatives that communicate the company's mission and value as a provider of behavioral insights.
Janot is an accomplished multi-modal B2B marketing leader with expertise in developing high-performance marketing programs rooted in customer-centric strategies. She worked most recently with Experian, a multinational consumer credit reporting company, the company said.
GrubMarket, San Francisco, said it completed the acquisition of Chicago-based Nova Libra, an enterprise software-as-a-service provider that specializes in eCommerce and supply chain software solutions.
Founded more than 23 years ago by Tom Greenhaw, Nova Libra has taken hundreds of projects from concept to reality, GrubMarket said. Its primary product offerings span enterprise e-commerce, product information management, and employee and vendor portals. The company's areas of expertise include custom application development, mobile applications, AI and machine learning, cloud computing and large-scale database management with an emphasis on Microsoft and Oracle technologies.
Elopak ASA, Oslo, Norway, and Tokyo-based Nippon Paper Industries Co. Ltd. said they signed a comprehensive Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The agreement covers further collaboration between the two companies, looking at how potential business can be jointly developed and organized given their respective expertise, assets and networks.
Nippon Paper Industries, the largest liquid packaging player in Japan, is concentrating efforts in the field of paper packaging with the goal of contributing to the enrichment of people's lives and the development of culture under the slogan of "pioneering the future together with trees." Nippon Paper pursues the potential of paper packaging born from wood, a renewable resource, and offers a variety of proposals, the companies said.
Elopak, a global supplier of carton packaging and filling equipment, offers sustainable packaging solutions that provide a natural and convenient alternative to plastic bottles. The MoU aligns with Elopak’s ambitions to meet the rising demand for sustainable packaging solutions by pursuing a growth strategy centered on investment in innovation, the pursuit of new business opportunities in existing and new markets across both fresh and aseptic markets, and driving the plastic to carton conversion, the companies said.