Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly announced that Kansas Dairy Ingredients (KDI) Cheese Company will expand its operations in Southwest Kansas, creating 40 new jobs and investing $45 million new business dollars in the Hugoton community.
“Due to our talented workforce, central location, and agricultural excellence, Kansas’ reputation as a global leader in the agribusiness and food manufacturing sectors is undeniable,” Governor Kelly said. “Congratulations to KDI on its expansion into Hugoton - I look forward to watching the company turn our state’s natural advantages into world-class products enjoyed across the globe.”
The facility will produce American-style, Italian-style, Hispanic-style Cheese and European-style cheese and butter. This expansion will be environmentally conscious, with the company committed to increased investment in water reclamation and eco-friendly construction practices.
“Western Kansas is booming with new agribusiness and food manufacturing investments,” Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland said. “KDI is seizing an incredible opportunity – there’s never been a better time to grow in Kansas. We’re so grateful for their decision to invest even more in Hugoton and in our state, and we will continue to be the strongest possible partner to exceptional agribusinesses like KDI.”
“Kansas Dairy Ingredients is a great asset to our community,” Hugoton Mayor Jack Rowden said. “KDI has been providing good jobs in Hugoton since they came here in 2013. KDI continues to expand their operation and with the new expansion will be providing 40 new job opportunities for our citizens. KDI is building a solid foundation for future generations to come work and live in Hugoton. Hugoton and Stevens County are very fortunate to have Kansas Dairy Ingredients in our community.”
According to the company, a major factor in the decision to expand in Hugoton was the high-quality local milk supply.
“We are very excited to announce our expansion in Kansas and appreciate the collaboration of our local Hugoton leadership for their continued support,” Tim Gomez, CEO of KDI Cheese Company, said. “The State of Kansas, our industry partners and KDI team associates made this possible. The local dairy community has invested greatly into Kansas for many years, and they have supported KDI since day one. We now have an opportunity to give that support back by providing a secure, long-term home for their milk. Our investment of $45 million and creation of 40 new jobs in Hugoton is exciting for all of us. We started construction in December of 2020 and are on target to receive milk in October of 2021. We have already added several positions to facilitate our training, thus minimizing the commissioning time once construction is complete.”
Including this new investment, Kansas has seen more than $2 billion in new capital investment so far in 2021, with nearly $6 billion in new investment brought to the state since 2019.