The construction of Past Food Company’s new facility in the Opole subzone of the Wałbrzych Special Economic Zone cost more than 80 million zlotys. The company will produce lasagna, especially for the Biedronka chain of stores. The facility in Opole is the most modern factory belonging to the French-Belgian corporation.
“The food industry has always been strong in Opolskie Province. Thus it comes as no surprise that we have decided to invest in this region,” says Maciej Wajs, Managing Director of the facility. “We can deem the project completed. Now the Belgians and the French will produce Italian food in Poland,” he jokingly adds.
The construction of the facility has been a joint venture of the French company Stefano Toselli, market leader in the production of chilled lasagna, and Ter Beke, a Belgian producer of fresh food. Initially, 50 people will be employed at the facility, although the plans are much more ambitious.
“We hope to attract not only new Polish customers, but also to enter other European markets. Our aim is to hire at least 150 people in Opole and reach an annual turnover of 250 million zlotys,” reveals Dirk Goeminne, Managing Director of Ter Beke.
The Opole facility has a floor area of 8,000 m2. It has been equipped with state-of-the-art production lines for making lasagna. Its construction took two years.
“When the cornerstone was being laid, it was raining heavily, and we were wondering if it had not been a mistake to locate our investment here,” laughs Douglas Hamer, President of Stefano Toselli. “But today the sun is shining. We are opening a modern factory and we have a wonderful team,” he emphasizes.
“Back then, I already knew that rain was a positive sign for a food company. No crops can be grown without it,” says Tomasz Jakacki, Deputy President of the Wałbrzych Special Economic Zone “INVEST-PARK”. “New jobs have emerged together with the factory. As the investors assure us, they are not going to rest on their laurels.”
The Wałbrzych Special Economic Zone has more than 40 ha of free land available to investors in Opole. There are currently 11 companies functioning within the subzone, which have invested 220 million zlotys and created 800 jobs.