Tuscarora Inc. is opening a 60,000-square-foot foam molding plant in Brenham, Texas, next year to serve customers in Austin, Texas, and Houston. Construction on the plant, which Tuscarora will lease, began last month. Production is scheduled to begin late next spring. Initially, the plant will have 30 employees and build to a staff of 75, said Dave O'Leary, vice president of sales and marketing. The New Brighton, Pa.-based firm will invest about $3 million in equipment for the facility.
``We have a number of potential customers, besides Compaq Computer, who need protective packaging for high-tech products,'' O'Leary said.
The plant, Tuscarora's 30th, uses polystyrene, polyethylene and polypropylene, all in expandable bead form.
In December, Tuscarora broke ground on a plant at Storm Lake, Iowa, which is set to open this fall. The 45,000-square-foot facility also will mold foam.
However, its end markets are more diverse, ranging from high-tech applications like Gateway 2000 computers to the appliance industry. The company invested $3 million in the plant, which will employ about 40.
According to O'Leary, Tuscarora is investigating expanding in Mexico.
``We are also exploring opportunities in other parts of the world,'' he said.
The company reported sales of $163 million for the year ended Aug. 31, 1995, and anticipates sales of $180 million this year. Besides expanded foam products, Tuscarora uses corrugated paperboard, molded and die-cut plastic, thermoformed plastic, wood and aluminum to custom design and manufacture interior protective packaging. It serves customers in the industries.