Dunkirk ice cream plant gets multi-million-dollar incentives to expand, create 200 new jobs

DUNKIRK, N.Y. (WIVB) — The County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency announced Tuesday that it’s giving support to Wells Enterprises’ Dunkirk manufacturing facility ahead of its massive renovation project.

The ice cream plant, which employs hundreds of people, is planning to expand, adding another 200 jobs.

Dunkirk ice cream plant to expand, add more than 200 jobs

At a meeting that day, the agency’s Board of Directors approved an $11.5 million sales tax exemption and a 10-year, $2.2 million payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement. Additionally, New York State is providing up to $10 million in Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits and a $6 million grant from Empire State Development.

CCIDA said the approved incentives will support the ice cream manufacturer with a multi-million dollar renovation project, allowing them to not only create new jobs but retain 400 existing ones.

“These jobs will help populate our schools, create additional value in our city, and allow the employees and their families to live, work, and thrive in our community,” Dunkirk Mayor Willie Rosas said.

Wells Enterprises, known for its popular brands such as Blue Bunny and Halo Top, was recently acquired by the Ferrero Group. Its expansion project is estimated to begin early next year, with ESD President Hope Knight calling it “a sweet victory for the community.”

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Evan Anstey is an Associated Press Award, JANY Award and Emmy-nominated digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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