Michigan apple grower-packer plans new facility

10/09/2012 11:25:00 AM
Vicky Boyd

Heeren Bros.Courtesy Heeren Bros.Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Heeren Bros. Inc. announced plans to build a $22 million state-of-the-art headquarters, warehouse and distribution center, and apple storage and packing facility.

The 170,000 square-foot building will be located in nearby Alpine Township, according to a news release.

Groundbreaking will depend on finalizing tax abatements and related issues with the township.

Heeren Bros. currently operates two apple packing and storage facilities and a Grand Rapids warehouse distribution center.

When the new facility is completed, tentatively scheduled for August 2013, Heeren Bros. will consolidate operations into a single location.

The new facility will feature 19 percent more storage space, including 15 controlled-atmosphere rooms.

It also will have a new infrared grading system, an electronic color sorting system and energy-saving refrigeration equipment.

Through its joint ventures and subsidiaries, Heeren Bros. manages more than 1,500 acres of orchards, and packs and sells more than 20 percent of the state's fresh apples, according to the release.

Among its subsidiaries are All Fresh GPS, Ridgeking Apple Packing and Storage, and Gourmet Specialty of Michigan.

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