Perry’s seeks tax breaks for ice cream expansion | Business Local

Perry’s Ice Cream Co. wants to expand its production of novelty treats at its Akron operation, by constructing an addition that would house an extruded ice cream machine.

That will allow the family-owned company to push out ice cream in new hand-held shapes and designs, producing popular and in-demand ice cream variations, including with toppings, coatings, flavor Both and blends.

According to its application to the Erie County Industrial Development Agency, the frozen foods company is seeking to build a 20,000-square-foot building on land it already owns adjacent to its current manufacturing, warehouse and office facility at 1 Ice Cream Plaza, while investing It would also renovate another 2,875 square feet of space, and upgrade the site’s engine room and pump room.

To support the $ 18 million project, Perry’s is asking the ECIDA for a package of $ 428,750 in sales tax relief, $ 45,000 in mortgage-recording tax incentives and an unspecified property tax break that likely would be the most lucrative part of the incentives.

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LOCAL PERRY'S ICE CREAM

Peppermint Stick lids wait to be placed onto Perry’s Ice Cream in Akron.


Mark Mulville / Buffalo News file photo


The company says the investment will retain 370 jobs while adding 15 new full-time positions needed to run the machinery, paying an average salary of $ 52,700. The project will also bring new technology to the region, while the company will provide additional skills training to both current and new workers.

“This new project brings the capability to create relevant and in-demand ice cream products to Western New York,” the company said in its application.

The Akron-based company started as a horse-and-cart dairy in 1918, began supplying ice cream treats to school cafeterias in 1932 and started selling pints of ice cream in the 1950s. Today, it cranks out more than 12 million gallons of its ice cream flavors and frozen novelties each year. Here’s a look at

This is the first product line expansion for Perry’s in more than 15 years, since 2007-2008. Originally founded in 1918 as Perry’s Dairy, the company began when H. Morton Perry bought a milk route, and initially consisted of a home delivery and wholesale business until 1932, when the cafeteria manager at Akron High School asked Perry to supply ice cream. Using a family recipe, he began making small batches and eventually bulk ice cream.

Now a fourth-generation business, Perry’s now employs over 400 in New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania, and distributes products across those states as well as New Jersey, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC

Besides its primary brand – which is No. 1 in Western New York – the company also provides contract manufacturing and resells ice cream and other frozen-food products from partner firms.

It currently makes and sells ice cream flavors in three-gallon tubs, half-gallons, family sizes, quarts and pints, as well as ice cream sandwiches and stick or bar novelties, mostly using milk from Western New York. Customers include grocery stores, convenience stores, national brand firms, local schools and sports arenas, and other businesses.

The new equipment line will add to that, improving the product offerings and capabilities of Perry’s. But it needs the ECIDA’s help to keep the project costs down, so the company can be more competitive as well, Perry’s said. Most of the production equipment will be made in the Netherlands.

Otherwise, “this will slow the project implementation schedule as additional financing will need to be solicited and approved and funded,” the company wrote.

Costs include $ 8.42 million for construction of the building, $ 1.4 million for renovation, $ 7.23 million for equipment and $ 950,000 in contingencies. Financing includes $ 1.8 million in equity, $ 14.2 million in bank loans and a $ 2 million loan that it expects to seek from the Empire State Development Corp., along with Excelsior Jobs tax credits.

Besides the ECIDA, the company plans to seek village approval and a building permit, starting June 20. If approved, work would begin in November and finish by Sept. 30, 2023.

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