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Pactiv expanding Corsicana, Texas, plant to make EPS cups

By: Michael Lauzon

September 18, 2012

LAKE FOREST, ILL. (UPDATED Sept. 18, 3:45 p.m. ET) — Packaging major Pactiv LLC plans to expand its Corsicana, Texas, plant to meet rising demand for expanded polystyrene cups.

The project was announced Sept. 17 by Pactiv and by Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who said the Texas Enterprise Fund will invest $930,000 in the project. The expansion will create about 200 jobs in Corsicana.

Pactiv will invest about $60 million in the expansion, including the construction of a 150,000-square-foot addition to its existing plant in Corsicana. The plant will be the second in Pactiv’s global chain of operations to make EPS cups and containers. The company also makes them in Bolingbrook, Ill.

In Corsicana it now makes packaging and shipping materials from foamed plastics.

Pactiv claims to be the world’s largest producer of food-service disposables and food packaging. It runs 55 manufacturing operations in seven countries and employs more than 12,000. In North America it has 25 thermoforming plants. It processes a range of materials, including polyolefins, polystyrene, PET, PVC and glycol-modified PET.

“The market demand for EPS cups is strong and this will be a great addition to Pactiv’s existing, multimaterial offering,” said Pactiv President and CEO John McGrath in a news release. The expansion will give Pactiv a broader line of products, he added.

Pactiv said groundbreaking for the expansion could begin in November, with manufacturing at the site beginning in late 2013.

Pactiv announced in August that it plans to close a thin-wall PS cup plant in Chippewa Falls, Wis., and relocate the equipment and production to other facilities. The closing will eliminate about 170 jobs.

Spokeswoman Tori Berndt did not comment on the current square footage and employment levels at Corsicana.

Lake Forest-based Pactiv is North America’s largest thermoformer, with estimated North American annual sales of about $3.2 billion, according to the most recent Plastics News ranking. The company is owned by Reynolds Group Holdings Ltd. of Auckland, New Zealand, which is part of Rank Group Ltd.