HP Hood announces $120 million expansion in Batavia, adding 50 more jobs

Posted 31 August 2023 at 5:31 pm

Press Release, Empire State Development

BATAVIA – Empire State Development (ESD) today announced that dairy product manufacturer HP Hood will grow its operations in Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park.

The project will include the addition of new processing systems, along with other upgrades which will allow the company to increase capacity for the production of additional extended-shelf-life (ESL) beverages at the Batavia facility.

As a result, the company has committed to creating up to 48 new jobs at the manufacturing facility. To date, the company has created more than 400 jobs at the site and currently employs close to 1,200 statewide.

Hood purchased the on-site, 363,000-square-foot plant in 2018 from the Dairy Farmers of America for $60 million and soon after expanded the facility by another 100,000 square feet. HP Hood is the agri-business park’s largest landowner.

“This continued commitment from one of the nation’s most prominent dairy companies will create top-quality jobs and spur new investment in the Finger Lakes,”

 said Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Hope Knight. “Agriculture and food processing are key pillars of the region’s economic development efforts, and HP Hood’s latest investment shows that our multi-pronged growth strategy is working.”

ESD is assisting the forward-thinking project with up to $1 million through the performance-based Excelsior Jobs Tax Credit Program in exchange for the job creation commitments. The total project cost has been placed at $120 million. Genesee County is also considering providing incentives for the project. Greater Rochester Enterprise also assisted with the expansion effort. Construction on the planned updates is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2025.

Headquartered in Lynnfield, Massachusetts, HP Hood has five New York State production facilities in Batavia, Vernon, Oneida, Arkport and Lafargeville. Founded in 1846, today Hood is one of the largest branded dairy operators in the United States. The company’s portfolio of national and super-regional brands and franchise products includes Hood, Crowley Foods, Planet Oat, Heluva Good!, LACTAID®, and Blue Diamond Almond Breeze®. The company’s annual sales are more than $3 billion.

Gary Kaneb, President and CEO of HP Hood LLC, said, “Our investment in the Batavia facility is being driven by the continued growth of ESLdairy and non-dairy beverage categories. We are grateful for the support of Empire State Development as Batavia continues to be a strategic site for the expansion of our ESL manufacturing capabilities.”

State Assemblyman Steve Hawley, said, “I’m happy to see Empire State Development’s announcement that HP Hood is expanding its operations in our region. Businesses like HP Hood play an important role in our state’s agriculture and specifically the dairy industry. Their commitment to add nearly 50 new full-time employees and retention of over 450 employees will provide more support for our local economy. This announcement is great news for our district and will have a positive impact on our community and Western New York as a whole.”

Steve Hyde, Genesee County Economic Development Center President & CEO, said, “HP Hood’s growth has already exceeded expectations at the Ag Park and this project adds to the success of the agricultural and food and beverage manufacturing sectors which continues to be leading employment sectors of our economy. This expansion is another endorsement of Batavia and the Ag Park’s role as the leading dairy hub of the Northeastern United States, and our local workforce’s talent and readiness for food and beverage manufacturing.”