Regions Southwest Virginia

Balchem Corp. to invest $10 million in first Virginia operation

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Balchem Corp., a public company that manufactures ingredients used in food, pharmaceuticals and animal nutrition, announced Monday that it will establish an operation in Alleghany County, investing approximately $10 million and creating 55 new jobs within two to three years.

Based out of New Hampton, N.Y., Balchem said it will manufacture encapsulated ingredients for global applications used in animal nutrition and health products. It plans to acquire a vacant, 68,000-square-foot building currently owned by the county, located in the Alleghany Regional Commerce Center.

In commenting on the announcement, Gov. Bob McDonnell said, “Alleghany County is the ideal location for Balchem Corp.’s first Virginia operation. The strategic location with direct access to Interstates 64 and 81 allows the company to easily serve its customer base in the Northeast and Midwest.”

Balchem has three business segments: ARC Specialty Products; food, pharmaceutical and nutrition; and animal nutrition and health. Through ARC Specialty Products, Balchem provides specialty-packaged chemicals for use in healthcare and other industries. The company is on the Forbes list of the 100 best small companies in America.

“Today is a great day in Alleghany County,” Stephen A. Bennett, chairman of the Alleghany County Board of Supervisors, said in a statement.  “Balchem is a growing, successful company that is making an investment in our community, diversifying our manufacturing base and creating excellent jobs for our citizens.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, Alleghany County, the Alleghany Highlands Economic Development Corp. and the Roanoke Regional Partnership worked together to secure the project.
McDonnell approved a $150,000 grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund to assist Alleghany County with the project. Balchem also is eligible to receive benefits from the Virginia Enterprise Zone Program, and the Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide funding and services to support the recruitment and training activities.

John Kuehner, Balchem’s vice president of operations, said, “We evaluated raw material supply, customer locations, trade infrastructure support and overall costs of doing business. These factors, combined with a significant incentive package, led us to this decision.”
Balchem projects making $10 million in capital investments within the first three years to purchase machinery and equipment, acquire the building and make building improvements. Of the 55 new jobs, 20 will come in the first year with the balance coming over the next two to three years.

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