General Mills Plans $100M Expansion at TN Plant

By expanding its facility in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, General Mills expects to create 80 new jobs.

Golden Valley-based General Mills, Inc., plans to invest $100 million to expand its production facility in Murfreesboro, Tennessee-a move expected to create approximately 80 new jobs.

General Mills manufactures products for its Yoplait brand at the Tennessee plant. The Yoplait line represents about $1.5 billion of General Mills' overall business.

General Mills spokeswoman Kirstie Foster confirmed the expansion plans Thursday. She said that the company intends to begin expansion of the plant in October, and it is expected to be completed within about 18 months.

Foster declined to comment on the number of employees currently working at the Murfreesboro plant, but according to a report by The Tennessean, the company employs about 850 people in the area.

The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development, in conjunction with Rutherford County officials, on Wednesday announced that the upcoming expansion will bolster the state's business community.

“I'm very pleased to have one of the world's most respected food companies growing and thriving in Tennessee,” Governor Phil Bredesen said in a statement. “This expansion is not just an endorsement of Tennessee's business climate, but in the quality and productivity of the workforce in Murfreesboro.”

Murfreesboro Mayor Tommy Bragg said that General Mills has been “a wonderful corporate citizen of our community for many, many years.”

Earlier this month, General Mills said in regulatory filing that French dairy company Sodima-which owns the Yoplait yogurt brand-wants to terminate an agreement that it has with General Mills in 2012. The company plans to fight back, and it filed a petition for arbitration on September 7.

“We intend to continue to use the Yoplait trademark under the terms of our agreement, and we will vigorously defend and enforce our exclusive rights to use the Yoplait mark in the United States,” General Mills said in a regulatory filing.

General Mills is Minnesota's seventh-largest public company based on its fiscal-year 2009 revenue, which totaled $14.7 billion. The company reported $14.8 billion in revenue for its 2010 fiscal year.