Anchor Packaging Inc. is expanding its thermoforming operation in Paragould, Ark., to the tune of $40 million, the largest such expansion in company history, its officials said.
In a May 12 news release, officials at the St. Louis film maker and thermoformer said the company broke ground April 28 to expand the plant to 310,000 square feet, from 240,000 square feet.
The expansion will house eight new in-line thermoforming machines for processing polypropylene and PET. Anchor spokesman Steven Eck would not say what brand of machines it is buying.
The project is to be complete by mid-October. It will incorporate ecofriendly features such as high-efficiency fluorescent lighting and will minimize storm-water runoff, the company said.
The plant, built in 1985, has capacity of 70 million pounds annually, Eck said. The expansion will increase that to 130 million pounds and will boost the number of employs there to about 660, from 540.
The plant makes reusable PP containers; upscale take-out packaging; and microwavable take-out containers made of recyclable PP and recyclable PET. The containers are sold to restaurants, supermarkets, food processors and other food-service providers.
Anchor also has a flexible film plant in nearby Marmaduke, Ark.