A major new industrial facility at Banks Crossing is being sold following action by the U.S. Department of Justice.
Diana Food, a chicken-based food ingredient facility that just recently began operations, is being sold to Kerry Luxembourg by Symrise AG. The sale comes after the Department of Justice forced Symrise to divest itself of the Diana Foods facility if the firm wanted to buy International Dehydrated Foods LLC and American Dehydrated Foods LLC, a reported $900 million deal.
"Without the divestiture, the combined company would control over 75 percent of the domestic market for the manufacture and sale of chicken-based food ingredients," the justice department said.
The Diana Food facility was the result of a a joint project between Banks County and the City of Commerce which led to the $50 million investment at Banks Crossing. It was announced in 2017 for a 40-acre site and a 90,000 sq. ft. building and opened in October 2018. It is one of Banks County's largest industrial projects and was called a "grand slam" by county leaders when it was announced.
The Banks County Board of Commissioners and the Banks County Development Authority approved transferring the Diana Food lease and bond arrangements to Kerry in called meetings last week.
The move by Symrise to sell Diana Food means the new merged firm will be competing with the Diana facility under Kerry's ownership.
"Kerry is a global manufacturer of ingredients and recipe solutions for the food and beverage industry," the Department of Justice said in a news release. "This divestiture ensures that the buyer of the Banks County facility will be well positioned to compete vigorously with the merged company in the manufacture and sale of chicken-based food ingredients in the United States."
Kerry Group was founded in 1972 and is based in County Kerry, Ireland. It is involved in a number of food-related products in the U.K. and other places around the world and employees around 25,000 people.
The firm has one other location in the U.S. located in Beloit, Wisconsin.