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Ferrero Fuels Growth With New R&D Lab Opening

The 45,000-square-foot facility will be used to develop new confections, cookies and other treats.
Danielle Romano
Ferrero R&D facility

PARSIPPANY, N.J. — Ferrero North America, part of the global packaged sweet food company the Ferrero Group, cut the ribbon on a new Innovation Center and North America R&D Labs in Chicago.

The new 45,000-square-foot facility located in the historic Marshall Field and Company Building brings together Ferrero's research and development teams from throughout the United States and houses teams working on Keebler, Famous Amos, Mother's, Fannie May and other brands in the Ferrero portfolio — a total of more than 150 employees.

"Our new Innovation Center and R&D Labs here in Chicago reflect Ferrero's rich heritage and will foster the creativity and culture that Ferrero is known for around the world," said Alanna Cotton, president and chief business officer of Ferrero North America. "Investments like this help us create high-quality, innovative products that will become a special part of Americans' lives and further drive category growth in confections, cookies, and beyond." 

[Click here for more Candy & Snacks coverage from CSNews]

The investment further expands Ferrero's footprint in Illinois. The company manufactures Butterfinger and Baby Ruth products at its plant in Franklin Park, and Keebler products on 110th Street in Chicago. The Ferrero manufacturing campus in Bloomington manufactures CRUNCH, 100 Grand and other products, and will soon include a new chocolate processing facility and a new Kinder Bueno production facility. 

"Chicago's innovation is not only propelling the growth of iconic global brands like Keebler, Famous Amos and Fannie May, but it's also cementing our city's reputation as a prime destination for the world's best talent and businesses," said Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson. "Congratulations to the Ferrero team on this remarkable achievement, and as a big fan of sweets, I look forward to enjoying the next generation of delicious treats that will be made in our great city."

The ribbon cutting represents the latest example of Ferrero's growth and investment in North America over the past few years. In addition to new projects in Illinois, the company invested in new capacity and capabilities for its Brantford, Ontario, plant earlier this year and previously added distribution centers in Pennsylvania, Georgia and Arizona.

[Read more: Supplier Spotlights: The Coca-Cola Co., Ferrero Group & Harbor Wholesale]

Ferrero's North American presence now totals more than 5,000 employees across eight offices, and 12 plants and warehouses in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean. Ferrero began its journey in the small town of Alba in Piedmont, Italy, in 1946. Today, it is one of the world's largest packaged sweet food companies, with more than 35 brands sold in more than 170 countries.

The Ferrero Group's iconic portfolio includes Nutella, Kinder, Tic Tac, Ferrero Rocher, Butterfinger, CRUNCH, Keebler, Famous Amos, Mother's Cookies and other distinctive cookie and chocolate brands.

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