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By Kimberley Donoghue
PBN Web Editor
FALL RIVER – Blount Fine Foods, soup and seafood product manufacturer, announced it will expand on its food service production and build a second production line at its waterfront facility in Warren.
Blount makes a variety of products, including clam chowder, lobster bisque, chicken noodle soup, currently at its Fall River facility in cup sizes for consumer consumption and bulk bag sizes for food service production.
Its fresh and frozen soups are sold under the Blount brand as well as through Legal Sea Foods and Panera Breads.
Blount is expanding the production of the bulk-size chowders and soups at its 25,000 square foot production plant in Warren and investing in “significant” equipment and facility upgrades.
The project budget and specific plans are still to be decided, but the company is not planning to expand the Warren building – just “beautify” the facility, which was originally built in 1946. A second phase of the project is slated to create a visitors center.
The plant is in a Blount complex that has a retail store and a clam shack, noted Mike Backus, general manager of the Warren facility.
Backus estimates that “millions of dollars” of new equipment will be installed at the plant. Current operations at the Warren facility include shucking clams and making fried clams and calamari.
“Chowders and soups have been an awesome source of growth for Blount Fine Foods and we’re really excited to further that growth in Warren and revitalize our waterfront facility,” said Backus while noting that local regulations did not play a part in the decision to expand the line in Rhode Island rather than Massachusetts.
“We have clam vessels at our dock every day; it’s just a natural fit to produce clam chowder here,” he added.