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Kikkoman to be first tenant in Jefferson County’s Food and Beverage Innovation Campus

Jefferson County is using 175 acres of county-owned land to create an industrial park specifically for food and beverage manufacturers. The park, known as the Food and Beverage (FAB) Innovation Campus, promises to bolster the local economy and further establish the county as a hub for food and beverage manufacturing.

The FAB Innovation Campus’s first tenant is a well-known brand. Kikkoman Foods, Inc., a global leader in soy sauce production, has chosen the site for its next state-of-the-art production facility and will occupy 100 acres of the campus. Construction will take place in two phases. Site preparation work for phase one is in progress and construction will begin in June on a 240,000 square-foot facility that will produce soy sauce and soy sauce–related seasonings, including teriyaki sauce. Phase two will add nearly 60,000 sq. ft. of space.

The $560 million project will create approximately 60 high-paying jobs. The Jefferson site will be the Japan-based company’s second production facility in Wisconsin and its third in the United States.

“Having a globally renowned company like Kikkoman as the anchor tenant in our Food and Beverage Innovation Campus speaks volumes about the appeal and potential of our region,” noted Jefferson County Administrator Ben Wehmeier. “We’re excited to partner with Kikkoman as they embark on this transformative journey, bringing sustainable growth and development to our county.”

Kikkoman’s plant in Walworth, about 40 minutes south of Jefferson, opened in 1973, and will also expand operations. They have proven to be generous corporate citizens in Walworth, contributing more than $17 million to charitable causes in the local community and beyond.

“Kikkoman’s story in Wisconsin is one of innovation, partnership and shared success,” noted Dale Oppermann, mayor of Jefferson. “Their history of partnership and community engagement mirrors our own values, and we are excited to welcome them to Jefferson.”

“We extend a warm welcome to Kikkoman as they join our dynamic community of businesses,” noted Tim Freitag, Jefferson’s City Administrator. “The company’s investment in Jefferson is a testament to our city’s vibrant business climate and skilled workforce.”

“We have always valued Walworth for its outstanding workforce, its central location for access to raw materials and pure water, and the open-hearted spirit of partnership of the local community,” said Mr. Yuzaburo Mogi, honorary chief executive officer and chairman of the board of Kikkoman Corp. “We chose Jefferson for those same reasons, and we look forward to expanding our footprint in Wisconsin and establishing a supply chain with increased stability in North America, Kikkoman’s largest overseas market.”

Food and beverage manufacturing, already a strong sector in the county, has seen significant growth in the past few years. Palermo’s Pizza began operations in the county in 2023, Nestle Purina expanded existing operations in 2022 and Aztalan Bio is investing $500 million in a former ethanol facility in Johnson Creek.

“Kikkoman’s decision to choose Jefferson for their expansion speaks volumes about the strategic advantages and opportunities we offer,” said Deb Reinbold, president of Thrive Economic Development. “We’re excited to work with Kikkoman to ensure their success in our community and to maximize the positive impact of this investment.”

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