ORRVILLE: The J.M. Smucker Co. headquarters campus in downtown Orrville is growing again — this time to add more office space, as well as a fitness facility and a daycare center for employees.
“Our employees spend a lot of time with us “ said spokeswoman Maribeth Burns. “We are striving to do things to help assist in ensuring [employees] are happy and have a good work-life balance and additional conveniences to their day to assist in wellness initiatives.”
Adding amenities helps to retain and attract employees, said Burns.
And the company has been growing.
When the company opened its new headquarters building in 2011, the expectation was it could accommodate 10 years of growth.
But the maker of food brands Smucker, Folgers, Jif, Crisco and Pillsbury has outgrown the facilities after more recent acquisitions Rowland Coffee and Sara Lee Beverage for Foodservice. Both of those brought more employees to the main campus on One Strawberry Lane.
In 2011, there were about 1,500 employees at the headquarters. Now there are about 1,700, Burns said.
Construction will begin in the fall. Details are not finalized on when the project will be completed.
Expansion moves include:
• A new office building will be built in between the current One Strawberry Lane North building and the “Renewal Building.” A road will be closed to accommodate the new building. Since the company’s newest plant is fully built and about half operational now, parts of the old plant will be repurposed or razed. The building will have open lighting and outdoor dining seating. The name and square footage have not been finalized.
• A new 30,000-square-foot “Innovation Center” in front of the current “Renewal” Building. This will be retail customer focused and provide a centralized area for clients to meet with various Smucker teams. The building will be in part of the repurposed plant and will utilize the history of the old plant. Areas will include the rail line to greet people and a glass line area (where glasses of jellies used to travel through the factory) as workspace and classrooms. Former freezer space will have a “store lab” or mock-up store and a virtual wall to utilize technology to show clients how Smucker product lines might look on their store shelves.
“We will utilize history throughout the building, but also a lot of technology and look to the future,” Burns said.
• The “Renewal Building,” which currently has the main cafeteria and conference rooms, will add 94,000 square feet to its existing 54,000. That will include a larger conference room to hold 1,200 employees instead of 600 and the on-site fitness center with exercise equipment, a group exercise room, indoor track and full-size gymnasium.
• The daycare will be built on land a few blocks off campus. Smucker bought the land from the Orrville schools. A third-party company will operate the daycare, which will service Smucker employees only for children ages 6 weeks to pre-kindergarten. It is slated to open in the spring of next year, said Burns.
Details are still being worked out about hours, but there will be some flexibility as employees work at different times on the main campus, she said.
• The Smucker Store and Cafe, on Wadsworth Road, will also get an update to its museum area. Next month, a self-service ice cream bar will open, featuring Smucker sundae toppings.
The dollar value of the projects was not disclosed.
Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3688 or firstname.lastname@example.org