'A rapidly growing customer base' drives Swiss chocolate ingredients supplier Barry Callebaut to open a new chocolate factory in California.
With a maximum capacity of about 25,000 metric tonnes, the factory will initially roll out two production lines of products for both industrial and artisanal customers.
Fully operational on August 1, 2005 the factory covers about 150,000 square feet of (leased) surface, and will create 65 jobs, the Zurich-based firm says in statement this week.
The firm's biggest US market, Barry Callebaut has seen sales grow on the US West Coast by 8-10 per cent over the last two of years.
Warehousing, distributionand customer service for all finished goods of the Barry Callebaut Group on the West Coast will be integrated into the new American Canyon facility.
"We decided on the American Canyon location partially because of its proximity to the Napa Valley and the Culinary Institute of America, and partially because the conversion of an existing building into a chocolate factory was much faster and efficient than building a factory from scratch," said Daniel Emond, head of operations & supply chain at Barry Callebaut North America.
Earlier this week the Swiss chocolate company said 'lower cocoa bean prices'and 'negative currency' had impacted sales revenue that fell 1.5 per cent to CHF2.16 billion ($1.79bn) for the six-month period ended February 28, 2005.