AUSTIN EDITION - New distribution center set for Packers

Firm supplies Hormel Foods, Quality Pork

By Roxana Orellana

An Austin company is building a new facility to accommodate a growing business and hopes to attract more.

Joseph Properties will construct a 12,000-square-foot facility to be leased to Packers Engineering &; Equipment. Packers, which was sold to Bunzl Distribution, a Missouri based company, in 2001, is a supplier to Hormel Foods Corp. and Quality Pork.


Packers provides disposable plastic bags and packaging materials to food processors in Iowa, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

"This will be a new state-of-the-art distribution center that we'll be leasing to the agency," said Carter J. Wagner, president of Joseph.

Although the ownership changed and Packers is no longer a locally owned company, Bunzl decided to keep the Packers name because of its 60-year history in Austin.

"We are fortunate to be expanding business relationships established by Packers," said Tom Byrnes, general manager of the consolidated Packers operation.

Preliminary construction has started on the new building near 14th Street and 21st Avenue Northeast and should be done by January.

The 8,750-square-foot building will be on enough land to allow for expansion.

Joseph will look for a new occupant of Packers' current building.

Wagner said the companies have been working on a deal for the past two years, but it wasn't until a few weeks ago that everything was worked out.


"It's very exciting for both the company and the city to have a new distribution center, which will hopefully increase jobs," he said.

The location also is ideal, according to Wagner. The new building will be near the interstate and less than two miles from Hormel, QPP and downtown.

The city is finishing a three-phase street project in the area, making it even more attractive to other business.

"It's been said 'build it and they'll come.' Well, they're already here and we want them to stay," Wagner said.

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