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Meijer dairy plant to create 100 jobs in Tipp City

Midwest retailer Meijer Inc. plans to build the company’s first Ohio-based dairy production facility in Tipp City, creating more than 100 new jobs in Miami County, area development officials announced Monday.

The $104 million dairy processing plant will employ 103 workers to help produce milk and other dairy products for Meijer stores, said Dave Burrows Jr., the Dayton Development Coalition’s director of economic development programs. The plant’s total payroll will be $4.3 million, for an average annual salary of nearly $42,000, he said.

The Ohio Tax Credit Authority on Monday approved a 60 percent, eight-year tax credit to Meijer for the expansion project. The agreement requires Meijer to maintain operations in Tipp City for at least 11 years.

The Grand Rapids, Mich-based retailer plans to build the new 84,000-square-foot facility adjacent to its distribution center at 4200 S. County Road 25A. Construction at the 178-acre site will start this year, with the plant becoming operational in 2015, Burrows said.

Burrows said the project’s cost is $104 million for construction and new equipment.

“We are glad to see them reinvesting in Tipp City,” said Jon Crusey, Tipp City’s city manager. Meijer currently employs about 800 workers at its distribution center, which opened in 1992. Last week, the company held a hiring event to fill 30 new jobs at the facility.

Meijer spokesman Frank Guglielmi confirmed the announcement, but declined further comment. He said more details on the facility will be announced in the coming months.

Michigan and Indiana also competed for the project, which had been in the works for 4 to 5 months, Burrows said. Officials from JobsOhio, Dayton Development Coalition, Miami County and Tipp City were involved in the process.

Tipp City continues to be an important site for Meijer’s logistics and distribution because of its location near the Interstate 75 and 70 interchange, Burrows said.

“That was another big piece of winning this project, is being able to actually produce something, put it in that particular distribution center and then get it out to stores,” he said.

Meijer’s food production plant will process raw milk that is brought to the facility, Crusey said.

Burrows said the facility will be built over three production phases. The first phase is to produce milk, juices and teas. The second and third phases will produce cottage cheese, snack dips and, eventually, ice cream.

Meijer operates 204 “supercenters” and grocery stores in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky, and employs more than 60,000 workers in five states. The company has eight stores in southwest Ohio.

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