Ice cream plant plans expansion

May 23, 2006|by ANDREW SCHOTZ


Unilever North American Ice Cream is investing $7 million to upgrade its Good Humor-Breyers plant in Hagerstown, Plant Manager Ken Wells said Monday.

As a result, the plant is hiring about 50 more employees, increasing its total to about 525 employees, he said.

Wells said the wages for the new jobs are "above average," but declined to say specifically what they are.

Many of the new workers will be hand packers, who take finished products and box them for distribution, he said. Other jobs will be in operation, wrap operations and maintenance.

The 140,000-square-foot plant will expand by about 5,000 square feet, Wells said. The rest of the improvements will be inside the building, including new production lines and equipment.


Wells called the expansion "a sign of good, solid growth."

The Good-Humor Breyers plant opened on Frederick Street in Hagerstown in 1983.

The plant produces Klondike, Popsicle and Good Humor products, as well as cones.

Good-Humor Breyers, a division of Unilever North American Ice Cream, was the 10th-largest employer in Washington County in 2005-06, according to the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission's 2006 Business & Industry Directory.

Good Humor-Breyers' Web site says the company, which is based in Green Bay, Wis., has 2,400 employees at six manufacturing facilities across the country.

Wells said the Economic Development Commission has been a big help to the Hagerstown plant. He said the plant might get tax breaks.

Cassandra H. Latimer, a marketing specialist for the EDC, declined to comment Monday because there were no agreements in place yet.

Wells said that planning for the upgrade started in August 2005 and construction started in January 2006.

He predicted that the work would be finished by the end of next month.

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