BELOIT - Lyons Tru To Nature, formerly Tru Aseptics, is ready to grow in Beloit as the company prepares to hire scores of workers to accommodate increased production and company growth.
Lyons Tru To Nature President Stacey Huels told the Beloit Daily News during an interview Tuesday the company plans to hire around 150 to 170 new employees to handle a range of manufacturing goals, bringing the total employee roster to around 200 by early 2020 - a significant jump from the current staff of 35. Jobs will exist in manufacturing and related processes of receiving, mixing and blending, processing, packaging and warehousing.
"There are going to be jobs at every facet of what we do," Huels said. "It's going to be key for us."
Tru Aseptics was acquired by California-based holding company Lyons Magnus on April 10, and through the acquisition, a growth plan is now in place to ramp up production capabilities at the Beloit facility, 2924 Wyetta Drive. New construction on an additional, connected warehouse will add between 80,000 and 100,000 square feet of additional production space, well over doubling what's already in place at the 60,000 square foot plant, Huels said.
The plant produces preservative free, minimally-processed fruit, dairy, vegetable and plant-based juice ingredients for the food and beverage industry. Huels said opportunities for the company are in the "dairy and protein beverage space."
At full production, 140 million units are expected to be produced annually by the company, with commercial production to start in the fall, Huels said.
Huels said it's not yet firm when construction will start, though city planning records state construction is expected to start this month and could wrap up in June of 2020. An adjacent parking lot will be built to accommodate the new staff growth.
In 2017, the company started work on a $9.4 million headquarters expansion after acquiring the Wyetta Drive property in 2016 from the Hendricks family.
Huels said new growth is driven by consumers, who are looking for products free of preservatives, artificial coloring and flavoring, with new appetites for anything from oat milk to protein milk and cold brew coffee, all products processed, packaged and shipped by the company.
"We just happened to find ourselves in a position to be able to do something," Huels said. "It's a relatively hard type of food manufacturing because of the nature of it all. It's super exciting."
People looking for potential employment should visit lyonsmagnus.com or stop by in person to drop off a resume, according to Huels.