Food company Danone North America held a ribbon cutting event on Friday to mark the opening of a new 180,000-sq-ft structure at its DuBois, PA manufacturing facility that will increase the company’s production capacity for plant-based food products.
Following completion of the “multi-million dollar” investment, the DuBois site is now the biggest production facility for making plant-based yogurt alternatives in the U.S., according to the company. The addition enables the plant to manufacture yogurt alternatives and nutritional powders sold under the Vega brand, Silk yogurt alternatives, and So Delicious dairy free yogurt and dairy-free cheese shreds.
“Dairy-free is different than non-dairy – dairy-free options must be produced in a facility that is solely dedicated to plant-based food production. As consumers seek out more dairy-free options, having a facility that meets this standard gives us an opportunity to deliver on their growing demand and high expectations,” Mariano Lozano, chief executive officer of Danone North America, said in a company press release.
Danone also invested in a number of energy-saving and environmentally-friendly features at its 24-acre DuBois facility.
“Many people who enjoy our products look for plant-based options because they are interested in lessening their impact on the environment through diet,” Chad Stone, plant director of the DuBois site, said in a statement. “Recognizing this is a priority for the people we serve, we are committed to continuously improving our environmental practices to ensure they are best-in-class. We have several projects underway including minimizing waste, reducing electricity consumption by converting to LED lighting across all areas of the DuBois facility and creating efficiencies for water use in our cleaning processes.”
The expansion is linked to Danone’s global goal to triple its plant-based business by 2025.