Wow, no cow! Innovation Foods to open $45m processing and packaging facility for Oatly in New Jersey in 2022

By Elaine Watson

- Last updated on GMT

Picture credit: Oatly
Picture credit: Oatly

Related tags Oatly oatmilk plant-based milk

New Jersey-based Innovation Foods is building a $45m, 71,000-square-foot facility dedicated to producing aseptic and extended shelf-life (ESL) beverages for Oatly, which is projected to open in mid-2022.

The facility at 4 Gorton Road, Millville, Cumberland County, New Jersey – which will create 40 new jobs - sits behind Oatly’s oat base facility on Orange Street, and is part of an ongoing $110m investment made by the Innovation-Oatly partnership at the Millville site over the last three years.

The Orange Street oat base facility – which is owned and operated by Oatly, and was constructed in collaboration with Innovation Foods in 2019 - turns raw oats into the oatbase ingredient used in all of Oatly’s US products (oatmilk, frozen desserts and 'oatgurt’), which it then ships to a variety of co-packing partners (including Innovation Foods) to be made into finished product.

While Oatly will continue to use external production facilities, the dedicated processing and packaging facility at Gorton Road, Millville will play a key role in continuing to meet US demand for Oatly’s products, said Mike Messersmith, Oatly’s North American president.  

Explosive demand

oatly teeshirt
Oatly - which generated a lot of buzz with a polarizing Super Bowl commercial featuring its CEO singing 'Wow, No Cow' in a field – recently submitted a filing with the SEC on a proposed IPO. Pic credit: Oatly

Oatly​​​ ​​- which is based in Malmö, Sweden and has operations in 20+ countries - launched in the US in coffee shops in late 2016 with a 3% fat barista edition, and now supplies thousands of stores with a range of oatmilks, frozen desserts and 'oatgurt.' It has also struck a nationwide deal​ with Starbucks.

Its New Jersey facility – which opened in May 2019 – has helped the company meet explosive demand​ (oatmilk recently overtook soymilk to become the #2 player in the US plant-based milk category behind almondmilk, and generated triple digit growth last year).

However, a second facility in Ogden Utah (producing oat base and finished products), which was scheduled to open last year, is only now coming online for Oatly, and should be fully operational in the coming months.

Oatly IPO

Oatly recently filed for an initial public offering​(IPO) with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The number of shares to be offered and the price range have not yet been determined, although people close to the matter told Reuters​ it could be valued at “more than $5bn, possibly up to $10bn.”

oatly plant
Family-owned Innovation Foods’ new plant in Millville New Jersey (pictured) will be dedicated to producing aseptic and extended shelf-life (ESL) beverages for Oatly. It also has a production facility in Bridgeton, NJ where it produces high acid juices, waters, tea, and fermented products for other customers (picture credit: Bosco Architects LLC)

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