Baking

King Milling builds new flour mill in Lowell

LOWELL, MICH. – King Milling Co. announced plans June 21 to build a new flour mill in Lowell at a cost of $42 million.

The new milling unit will have a daily flour production capacity of 7,500 quintals, bringing the total capacity of the Lowell mill to 24,500 quintals. The site’s fourth milling unit, the mill will be almost entirely dedicated to the production of durum wheat flour. Currently, the company’s mill A is an oscillating mill, producing durum wheat and soft wheat flour; mill B (added in 2014) produces patented durum wheat flour; and mill C produces whole wheat flour.

King Milling said the expansion decision was “fueled by strong demand” for the company’s flour.

“King Milling is proud of our century-long presence in the Lowell community and the tremendous growth we have experienced since our humble beginnings in 1890,” said Brian Doyle, President of King Milling. “This is the most significant investment we have made, and it will benefit Michigan’s agriculture and food processing sectors for many years to come.

“This expansion is part of our commitment to be at the forefront of milling technology and produce the highest quality flours and wheat products for our customers here in Michigan and across the country.”

Mr. Doyle said Flour milling and baking news that although the new mill will produce durum wheat flour, the decision to build the mill was driven by strong demand for durum wheat flour and soft wheat flour. He said the addition will “reduce pressure on Plant A” as the company seeks to keep pace with demand.

Bühler, Inc., Plymouth, Minnesota, has been engaged as the primary equipment supplier for the new milli. Automation systems will be supplied by Kice Industries, Inc., Wichita, Kan. Todd & Sargent, Inc., Ames, Iowa, will serve as contractor.

As part of the project, 150,000 buses of grain storage capacity will be added to Lowell. The mill already has 3.6 million grain storage buses.

The factory, a 35,000 square foot, 6-story facility, is expected to be operational by the end of 2023. The company said it is working to secure permits so it can start the project this summer. The building will be large enough to accommodate a second milling unit if the company decides to expand in the future.

King said the project was made feasible with a 50% tax abatement over 12 years for the project approved at a June 20 city council meeting. In May, the Michigan Commission on Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) approved a $250,000 investment in the Food and Agriculture Grant Program.

King Milling said that with this addition the company would create six new jobs in the first two years.

MDARD’s Food and Agriculture Investment Program grants are awarded to companies that seek to “increase production space, expand services through a sustainable and scalable focus, create new high-paying jobs and help grow Michigan’s global food and agriculture footprint,” King Milling said.

“Investing in local businesses like King Milling helps create well-paying jobs, supports local economies, and fuels the continued growth of Michigan’s vital food and agriculture sector,” said Gary McDowell, director of MDARD. . “This project, made possible in part through MDARD’s Food and Agriculture Investment Program, underscores King Milling’s commitment to Michigan. They will be able to process more wheat locally, meet the demand from bakers and grain farmers across the country, and create new opportunities for our wheat farmers. »

Already the largest flour mill in the state, King Milling will account for about half of Michigan’s flour milling capacity once the new flour mill is operational, based on 2022 data.Grain & Milling Annualpublished by Sosland Publishing Co.