FINDLAY, Ohio — McLane Co. Inc. held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new $150-million grocery distribution center here on Dec. 1.
Ohio Governor John Kasich, Findlay Mayor Lydia Mihalik and other local leaders attended. Upon opening, the 417,338-square-foot facility will employ 400 to 500 people.
"Of our 80 grocery and foodservice distribution centers nationwide, the Findlay facility is the most technologically advanced combining teammates, state-of-the-art automation, advanced robotics and artificial intelligence," said Tony Frankenberger, president of McLane Grocery.
The advanced features of the distribution center will enable it to deliver more than 325,000 picks of items per day at peak operations, according to the company.
In his remarks, Kasich applauded McLane's decision to open the center in Ohio and spoke of the company's positive impact on the community, as well as its inclusive hiring policies. "That is a huge, huge deal, when we're giving everybody a chance," Kasich said.
Mihalik added, "It's not just the environment that makes things successful, it's a competent and committed workforce, one that wants to do the right things and that's how companies like McLane continue to be amazing companies and we are so happy that McLane chose Findlay, Ohio to call home."
McLane's Findlay distribution center will store approximately 16,000 grocery and convenience store items from more than 700 suppliers, a number that will continue to increase in 2018. Robots utilize bar codes on the products to store and transfer pallets of goods, traveling up to 60 miles per hour to fulfill orders. Employees help control and program the robots, and load and organize products into bins based on their final destinations.
They are then delivered to c-stores, mass merchants, warehouse clubs and drug stores in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana and Pennsylvania.
"There is an outstanding culture providing a strong workforce place here in Findlay in Hancock County and when I say strong I mean that in the sense of commitment, respect, and teamwork," said Julie Norris, division president, McLane Grocery Distribution.
More than 500 construction trade representatives were employed during the distribution center's 14-month construction. McLane is committed to hiring Ohioans and contributing to the Finday and Ohio economy, the company said. Employees are relocating to Findlay from Toledo and Lima, Ohio, Indianapolis, and Detroit to work at McLane.
The company has also hired 95 truck drivers and has plans to hire 75 more.
Temple, Texas-based McLane is one of the largest supply chain service providers in the United States, offering grocery and foodservice supply chain solutions for convenience stores, mass merchants, drugstores and chain restaurants.