November 10, 2017 6:41 pm

Feihe breaks ground on Kingston plant

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Chinese infant formula company, Feihe International, held a special ceremony in Kingston Friday afternoon to commemorate the beginning of construction of its 320,000 square foot facility — the first of its kind in Canada.

“There is no other manufacturer (of powdered dairy products) in Canada,” Gaëtan Paquette of the Canadian Dairy Commission said. “So we felt rather than continue to import this product, we should find someone that can manufacture it in our country.”

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The company will also look at ways to export the products created in Kingston to different parts of the world.

The hope is for the facility to be completed and equipment testing to begin during the second half of 2019, and full production to follow in 2020.

“The process of production will ramp up over a period of time,” Carey Bidtnes, Business Development Officer with Kingston’s Economic Development Office said. “As each line gets up to full production, they’re estimating anywhere from 200 to 250 full-time employees.”

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Two production lines will be housed within the facility, one for cow’s milk, and another for goat’s milk.

Friday’s gathering included a nod to the company’s Chinese heritage, with ceremonial firecrackers set off to awaken guardian spirits.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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