Schwan’s Company invests in manufacturing facility to expand Asian food category

By Deniz Ataman

- Last updated on GMT

Source: Getty/TommasoT
Source: Getty/TommasoT

Related tags Schwan's Asian products

U.S.–based Schwan’s Company and CJ Foods, its South Korea-based subsidiary, purchased a 142-acre site in Sioux Falls, S.D., for its 700,000 square-foot production facility to support its Korean food brand, bibigo, using modernized automated production lines.

While construction is currently in the planning stages, the facility will feature automated state-of-the-art production lines, a warehouse and distribution center, shipping and receiving docks and some office space, Chuck Blomberg, senior communication manager, Schwan’s Company, told FoodNavigator-USA.

The company initially announced plans in 2021 to build its Sioux Falls plant, “which is projected to cost hundreds of millions of dollars and add more than 600 new employees,” in addition to opening a regional office downtown, which will add 50 jobs, with the likelihood of growing up to 100 jobs once construction is complete, according to the company’s press release​.

The production site also will feature a wastewater treatment plant designed by Schwan’s and state and city officials that will enable the company to release water to the city with “the least amount of impact on the city’s current operations,” the company stated in the same release.

Expanding into the Asian cuisine market, building up the bibigo brand

Between Asian restaurants and consumer packaged foods, the Asian cuisine market has gained popularity in the US, with 73% of all counties in the nation having at least one Asian restaurant, according​ to Pew Research Center.

With $145.3 billion generated in revenue in 2022, the global Asian cuisine market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of more than 7% between 2023 to 2030, according to Nasdaq data​.

Schwan’s production facility will manufacture Asian-style foods, mainly the company’s Korean food brand bibbigo, in addition to frozen and shelf-stable meals, sides, snacks and appetizers.

“This project will create significant new production capacity for Schwan’s, enabling us to continue to support our market-share leading bibigo brand and drive future innovation and growth in the Asian food category,” outgoing CEO Dimitrious Smyrnios said in a statement.

bibigo offers a range of packaged foods in frozen and shelf-stable formats, including frozen dumplings, appetizers and entrees, as well as shelf-stable sauces, seaweed snacks and microwaveable rice and sides.

“The U.S. market continues to deliver high growth for CJ Foods and the ability to continue to scale our portfolio of products to meet the growing consumer demand is vitally important to our strategy. This facility will enable us to further accelerate the growth of [Korean food] and other Asian cuisines,” Minsok Pak, CEO, CJ Foods, said in the same statement.


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