Heartland Food Products to add 187 jobs by 2020
By Mark Ambrogi
A major acquisition for Heartland Food Products Group will mean more jobs for the Carmel and Indianapolis area.
Heartland, a leading producer and marketer of low calorie sweeteners, coffee and drink mixes, made an agreement to acquire Splenda brand from McNeil Nutrition LLC, a Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. on Aug. 25. Heartland recently announced its plans to add 187 jobs by 2020.
“We are anticipating adding both to our plant (in Indianapolis) as well as to our Philadelphia and Carmel office,” said Ted Gelov, chairman and CEO of Heartland, which has its corporate headquarters in Carmel.
There is a sales and marketing office in Philadelphia. There will be a creation of manufacturing management jobs as well as other production employees.
“There will also be the creation of jobs in office in finance, marketing and sales,” Gelov said.
Gelov, a Carmel resident for 30 years since graduating from Purdue, started Heartland in 2005.
“Splenda is an iconic brand and the No. 1 low-calorie sweetener brand in the U.S.,” Gelov said. “It’s a global business. The product is extremely popular because of its great taste. At a time where there is great emphasis on health and wellness, Splenda is a really fantastic product, and in my opinion the best product to use to reduce calories and unwanted added sugars.”
Gelov said Splenda is the only acquisition the company has had.
“It’s all been organic growth,” he said.
He said it has given Heartland a platform to channel its product into multiple layers of distribution of food service.
Heartland plans to invest approximately $26 million to increase production capacity at its Indianapolis facility.
In 2014, Heartland announced plans to add 160 jobs by 2017. Heartland now expects it will add those jobs this year.
The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Heartland up to $1.75 million in conditional tax credits and $150,000 in training grants based on job creation plans.