Custom profile extruder Jifram Extrusions Inc. is doubling plant size to 50,000 square feet and purchasing additional equipment in a $1.1 million program scheduled for completion in January. ``We are adding three extruders and other equipment for automated processes,'' said James Fischer, owner and president of the Sheboygan Falls, Wis., firm. ``The additions will increase Jifram's manufacturing capacity by 50 percent.''
The new 24:1 extruders have diameters of 31/2, 21/2 and 2 inches, he said.
Fischer is investing in automation to offset difficulty recruiting talent in an area with low unemployment rates.
Jifram had 1995 sales of $4.1 million and forecasts $4.7 million this year. Jifram increased its work force about 20 percent this year and now employs 40.
Fischer founded Jifram in 1981. Velcro USA Inc. of Manchester, N.H., acquired Fischer's patented invention of an extruded multihook fastener in 1985, enabling Jifram to build a 12,000-square-foot plant.
Fischer expanded the facility to 25,000 square feet in 1986.