Tuffy's Pet Foods officially opens new state-of-the-art facility
Tuffy's Pet Foods Inc. officially opened its new, state-of-the-art $70 million manufacturing facility in Perham last week. Due to rain, the catered lunch and short grand opening program portion of the celebration was moved indoors to the Perham C...
Tuffy's Pet Foods Inc. officially opened its new, state-of-the-art $70 million manufacturing facility in Perham last week.
Due to rain, the catered lunch and short grand opening program portion of the celebration was moved indoors to the Perham Center of the Arts. Twin Cities TV personality Eric Gisleson was the emcee for the program and presented a short video of KLN manufacturing history in Perham that started 51 years ago.
U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, D.-Minn., thanked the Nelson family for having the vision to start a business and make it happen so many years ago.
"I am excited to see their next iteration. This is what America is all about, having the freedom and opportunity to start such businesses," said Peterson who represents a large chunk of western Minnesota.
KLN Bands President and CEO Kenny Nelson thanked the many people who made the the new 130,000 square-foot production plant possible.
"My dad, Tuffy Nelson, started the company in 1964 in an old, 3,000-square-foot potato warehouse which is kind of ironic since we'd go on with Barrel of Fun [potato chips] later. Now we have over 700,000 square-feet of space thanks to all our additions through the years," said Nelson.
"This new facility was built with food safety, quality and efficiency in mind," he said, noting that the facility was designed to meet the requirements of today's pet food market by combining technologically advanced equipment with complete process segregation.
The third generation in the company, KLN Brands vice president Charlie Nelson, offered his thanks at the ceremony to the many salespeople and distributors who made the trip to Perham to see the new facility during its grand opening.
"There are people here from Costa Rica, Israel, and and the Ukraine," said the company vice president.
The facility expansion includes more than 180,000 square feet of production and warehouse space to accommodate Tuffy's growth. Production capacity in the new facility will increase more than 50 percent over the original facility. The plant was also built with even more expansion capabilities in mind.
The original facility will be converted to warehouse space and an expansion of soft pet treats capacity.
Tuffy's has been producing dry dog and cat food kibble more than 50 years. Tuffy's parent company, KLN Family Brands, is headquartered near the new Perham plant along with the Barrel O' Fun Snacks, Kenny's Candy Licorice and Nutheads Chocolate factories.
Nearly half of the 3,000-person town works for KLN as company officials said their workforce is about 1,400 employees.