Hilmar Cheese Company, Inc., announced plans Thursday morning to build a milk powder processing facility in Turlock, the company’s third facility since it was founded in 1984.
“Hilmar Cheese Company is a solid business and major employer for our area with great career opportunities, a strong commitment to the environment, and a proven track record of supporting our community with many significant donations,” said Turlock Mayor John Lazar. “We are glad they chose to grow here.”
Once completed, in about 18 months, the new facility will bring 40 full-time jobs to the local economy, in addition to the temporary construction jobs to build the facility.
The Turlock facility will be located within the boundaries of the Turlock Regional Industrial Park, near the recently constructed Blue Diamond plant. It will have state of the art equipment enabling workers to manage and transport items around the facility with ease – products like those seen on the Platforms and Ladders website will help workers with warehousing and making their operations more efficient.
The new facility will produce a variety of milk powders, which are specifically designed to deliver nutrition to developing nations. Milk powder does not require refrigeration and is simple to reconstitute. It is also easily transported and stored.
Hilmar Cheese Company CEO and President John Jeter says Hilmar Cheese is expanding its ingredients business to meet strong global demand for milk powders.
“The U.S. dairy industry, and specifically California, is well positioned to be a consistent supplier to the world,” he said.
“With this expansion into milk powders, we are continuing our tradition of converting our high quality milk supply into the value-added products customers want,” added Tom Ielmini, vice president, Hilmar Ingredients, a division of Hilmar Cheese Company which will market the milk powder. “We now have customers in fifty countries and are always striving to meet their needs. This is part of a broader plan to be a larger, more dynamic global supplier.”
Hilmar Cheese selected the Turlock location with assistance from Go-Biz, Governor Jerry Brown’s Office of Business and Economic Development. One of the main reasons the Turlock site was selected was because of its proximity to the Port of Oakland, which provides export opportunities.
“The City of Turlock’s staff was excellent to work with,” Jeter commented. “This is a great example of how effective business and government can be when we work closely together.”
The decision to expand was guided by Hilmar Cheese Company’s original, second and third generation of dairy farm family owners.
“This investment will provide the family dairy farms that supply us milk the opportunity to grow. It allows us to develop new relationships with dairy farmers who produce high quality milk in this region,” said Richard Clauss, founding owner and chairman of the board of directors. “This project will help strengthen the California dairy industry and provide a nutritious product to serve customer needs.”