The 90,000 sq. ft facility in Blanchardstown, Dublin was opened last week by the Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny.
The site adds 35,000 sq ft. to the company’s existing manufacturing footprint and will produce a new range of gourmet Belgian chocolate coated beans.
The firm exports 97% of its product to around 55 countries worldwide, but chose Ireland as the base for its upgraded facility.
Speaking to ConfectioneryNews.com joint company managing director, Peter Cullen said: “We believe that it’s the right environment.”
“There are tax advantages by locating the business in Ireland and the labour force is excellent.”
“Being an Irish company we wanted to locate in our home territory.”
The Jelly Bean Factory’s main export market is Europe, namely Great Britain, Germany and Scandinavia.
Far East ‘out of the question’
Cullen added that Australia and New Zealand were big growth markets for the firm, as well as the Middle East.
He said that establishing a manufacturing base for the export company in the Far East was out of the question amid concerns over food safety.
“We see people moving and regretting they have done so,” he continued.
According to Cullen, many firms had set-up plants in the Far East with a short-term view of cutting wages, without considering that the weather is unsuitable for confectionery production.
Europe and US
The Jelly Bean Factory has annual turnover of €11 million, with offices in the UK, US and the Middle East.
It claims to be Europe’s largest jelly bean producer in Europe through deals with large retailers including Tesco, Carrefour, 7-11 and Wal-Mart.
Cullen said that although the Jelly Belly Candy Company dominates the market in the US, his company were able to compete in certain areas.
The Jelly Bean Factory will add 25 new employees to its 55-man workforce to oversee its upgraded facility.