Canada-based grower Mucci Farms has broken ground on the first phase of construction for a state-of-the-art greenhouse facility south of the border in Huron, Ohio.
In a release today the company said the large-scale, multi-year project would cover a total of 60 acres, with greenhouses equipped with grow lights to extend the growing season and a 272,000 sq. ft. distribution warehouse to support a rising U.S. customer base.
The first phase covers 24 acres and Mucci Farms expects produce from the initial facility as soon as March 2018.
The company highlighted the use of grow light technology allowed for year-round production, stimulating sunlight by providing or supplementing the necessary light to optimize plant growth.
The company highlighted it already had a well-recognized brand in “a number of large US retailers”, and the expansion to include a U.S. growing facility was strategic in order to meet U.S. customer demands for “locally grown, year round, fresh and favourful produce”.
Mucci said it had been exploring different U.S. expansion opportunities for the past 18 months, but the site located in Huron, Ohio was a perfect fit due to its easy access to a number of current and potentially new retailer distribution facilities.
The new site is on the other side of Lake Erie from Mucci’s corporate headquarters in Kingsville, Ontario, and is only about a three-hour drive away (152 miles).
“The City is excited to collaborate with Mucci Farms in bringing a new, advanced technology to the region. The impact to this area is expected to be profound and transformational. Welcome,” said City of Huron Manager Andy White.
“We are extremely pleased to be a part of this next step for Mucci Farms. The Company’s advanced practices and reputation is well suited for our region and business community,” added Erie County Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Abbey Bemis.
The company anticipates that when the first phase of construction is completed it will be looking to employ up to 100 full-time positions. Mucci Farms expects this number will increase to 250 full-time positions by the completion of the third phase of construction.