Baldor Specialty Foods has closed on a lease amendment that will expand its facility in the Hunts Point neighborhood in the Bronx, NY, by 100,000 square feet. The lease, signed with the New York City Economic Development Corp., will allow the fresh produce and specialty food distributor to strengthen the area’s robust food and beverage distribution network.
The Hunts Point Food Distribution Center is one of the largest in the world and includes the Hunts Point Terminal Produce Market, the Hunts Point Cooperative Meat Market, the New Fulton Fish Market, and parcels leased to companies, including Baldor and Krasdale Foods.
The nearly $20 million expansion, funded entirely by Baldor, will create 350 new quality jobs in addition to 400 jobs the company has created since moving to the Food Distribution Center in 2007. The expansion will allow Baldor to grow its fresh cuts manufacturing operation and increase its distribution to customers across the city and metropolitan region, including restaurants, hotels, retail food stores, corporate kitchens, nursing homes, hospitals and schools. The project will also serve to promote regional food distribution, adding capacity to Baldor’s current operation that already serves over 50 local farms and partners by distributing 40,000 cases of local product into the regional food system each week during peak season.
“This expansion solidifies our Bronx location as the headquarters of Baldor Specialty Foods,” TJ Murphy, owner and chief executive officer of Baldor Specialty Foods, said in a press release. “We are proud to make this investment in the Bronx, to strengthen our commitment to Hunts Point, and to continue to be a strong supporter of the area’s overall economic development.”
Currently, Baldor occupies a 193,000-square-foot warehouse distribution facility with over 1,000 employees located on 13 acres in the Hunts Point Food Distribution Center, which it leases from the city. The lease amendment will allow Baldor to expand its facility and relocate its parking spaces to the adjacent Halleck Industrial Development site. Baldor was selected through a public Request for Proposals issued in 2013. The project is consistent with the goals of the Hunts Point Vision Plan to catalyze food-related industrial uses and create local jobs.
Together, approximately half of the food in New York City stores and restaurants passes through the NYCEDC-managed Hunts Point Food Distribution Center. The cluster of wholesale markets sits on 329 acres and support 115 private wholesalers that employ more than 8,000 people. In March 2015, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the City will invest $150 million over 12 years to enhance the capacity of the Hunts Point Food Distribution Center, strengthen existing businesses, and attract new entrepreneurs, generating nearly 900 construction jobs and approximately 500 permanent jobs.