A Canadian chocolatier arrives in North Texas and sweetens its production line with innovative technology.
After maximizing its production capacity in the Vancouver area, Chewters Chocolates, a maker of low-sugar organic candies best known for its ChocXO brand, is expanding operations with a new chocolate manufacturing plant in Rockwall. The new plant will include “state-of-the-art manufacturing and automation equipment,” the company says.
“Exceptional businesses flock to the Lone Star State because of our world-class business climate and unparalleled, highly skilled and diverse workforce,” Governor Greg Abbott said in a statement. “The expansion of Chewters Chocolates into Texas is a major boon to our economy and the hard workers of Rockwall.”
Facility to bring 120 jobs to the region
Expecting to innovate by the end of the year, Chewters plans to invest more than $40 million to develop a 189,000 square foot facility on 10.6 acres in Rockwall Technology Park. In a move that is expected to create 120 jobs, plans include up to four “state-of-the-art” production lines producing chocolate treats, as well as warehouses and offices.
A retail store and glass “viewing room” for Rockwall chocolate lovers
In addition to increasing its production capabilities, the new facility will help Chewters do contract manufacturing for a number of North American customers. The confectioner sees its new facility as a place for the Rockwall community and plans to include a retail store and glass viewing room for self-guided tours.
X-ray inspections and advanced weighting
Earlier this year, Chewters announced a “major investment” in production technology, including areas such as X-ray inspections and check weighting at its 55,000 square foot facility in British Columbia. This factory is capable of producing 15,000 metric tons per year, according to Confectionary News. The company serves customers across Canada, the United States and Mexico.
Phil Wagner, president of the Rockwall Economic Development Corporation, thinks Chewters will be a good addition to Rockwall’s economy.
“First and foremost, their investment will be used to expand the city, county and school district’s tax base, which will help ensure that we can continue to have high-quality government services in Rockwall without any tax burden is imposed on local residents,” Wagner said in a statement. “Beyond that, the retail store and factory tours Chewters will offer will bring a public element to Tech Park that we’ve never had before.”
Strengthen American production
Chewters CEO Richard Foley said the company chose DFW for its new location in part because of its central geographic location for manufacturing and distribution, which will allow it to better serve US customers.
Choosing Rockwall for the new facility seems to have been an easy choice. According to the company, after Rockwall EDC responded to a request for proposals issued by Chewters in January, Foley was already visiting the site and signing an express letter of interest by the end of March.
Earlier this year, Chewters contracted design-build firm DB Constructors of Fort Worth to construct the manufacturing facility. Currently under design as the company awaits engineering and site plan approval, Chewters expects the facility to be fully operational by early 2024.
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