Link maker

Jerky maker Jack Link is spending $450 million on a new plant in Georgia, creating 800 jobs

Jerky maker Jack Link’s will create 800 jobs and invest $450 million to build a new manufacturing plant in Georgia.

The company, which Link Snacks reviewed in about 30 locations. Kevin McAdams, president of North America for Jack Link’s, told WMAZ that the company ultimately chose Perry, Georgia because of its community, business-friendly environment, quality of labor- of the city and its general culture. Perry is about 100 miles south of Atlanta.

McAdams said the company was also doubling the size of its factory in AlpenaSouth Dakota, and the addition of facilities in minong, Wisconsin and Underwood, Iowa, the AP reported. In addition to the Midwest, Wisconsin-based Jack Link’s has facilities in New Zealand, Brazil and Germany. Parent company Link Snacks claims to be the largest maker of protein snacks in the world.

A Georgia plant would give the meat-based snacks giant a facility to supply parts of the southern and eastern United States, potentially reducing transportation costs and improving its environmental footprint. The facility is expected to be operational by the end of 2023.

The global meat snack market is a rapidly growing segment, a key reason why so many food companies have products in the space. Revenue is expected to reach $14.5 billion in 2029, from $7.1 billion in 2019, according to Transparency Market Research.

In 2021, Jack Link’s was the top-selling meat snack brand in convenience stores – a popular consumer channel – with sales exceeding $900 million, according to IRI data shared by CSP.

As consumer trends such as snacking and on-the-go consumption evolve, a growing number of CPGs have recently announced that they are expanding existing facilities or building new plants in anticipation of future demand.

Hostess Brands said last month it would spend up to $140 million to convert an idle Arkansas plant into a bakery. Nestlé plans to spend $675 million on a facility in Arizona to manufacture creamers for its Coffee mate, Coffee mate Natural Bliss and Starbucks brands.

Mondelēz International announced it would invest $122.5 million over three years to expand capacity at its Richmond, Va., site where it manufactures Oreos, and JM Smucker committed $1.1 billion to build a new manufacturing facility and distribution center in Alabama to produce its Smucker’s Uncrustables sandwich.