ALBANY, NY – Great Lakes Cheese broke ground on its newest manufacturing and packaging plant in Franklinville, NY, on April 28.

The state-of-the-art, 500,000-square foot facility, to be built on a site that sits on the town line separating Franklinville and Farmersville, NY, has a capital investment of more than $518 million – the largest infrastructure investment in the Hiram, Ohio-based cheese producer’s history.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul’s office shared that it also is the largest economic development project in the history of Cattaraugus County.

The new plant, scheduled to open in 2025, will replace Great Lakes Cheese’s Cuba, NY, facility. The company will retain 228 jobs and add 215 employees by upgrading to the new facility.

"Great Lakes Cheese was uncompromising in its search for a site that worked for our employee-owners, our business, and the local community,” said Great Lakes Cheese chief executive officer Dan Zagzebski. “Franklinville checked every box. The community has understood and embraced our vision of, 'Together, for generations to come.' They have partnered with us on this historic investment so that generations of employee-owners can thrive in western New York."

Hochul called the new facility a “historic win” for the region, providing an “extraordinary boost” to its economic growth and increasing the stability of New York dairy farms.

National manufacturer Great Lakes Cheese, which supplies approximately 25% of all the packaged cheese consumed in the US, has eight existing plants. When the new Franklinville plant opens, between that site and the company’s processing facility in Adams, NY, the company expects to make use of roughly 14.4% of New York’s total milk production.

The company serves grocery, club and super stores, as well as restaurant chains and foodservice distributors and has facilities in Ohio, New York, Tennessee, Utah and Wisconsin. It also is constructing a new facility in Abilene, Texas, scheduled to open near the end of 2022.

New York’s economic development agency, Empire State Development, awarded a $3.7 million grant and up to $14.6 million in performance-based New York State Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits to Great Lakes Cheese, with the Franklinville facility creating 215 new jobs.