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Champion Petfoods Touted for Bringing Food Production to Kentucky

The decision to build a new $85 million specialty pet food kitchen in Kentucky, and the state’s spirited workforce are just a few things that Champion Petfoods CEO Frank Burdzy recently discussed in an article featured in the latest edition of the Kentucky Economic Development Guide.

Champion Petfoods Touted for Bringing Food Production to Kentucky

In Numbers

  • Auburn, KY
  • 371,100 s.f.
    Square Footage
  • 14 months

After searching for a home for two years, Champion broke ground on its first U.S. kitchen located in Auburn, Ky. in July. The kitchen is expected to be operational in 2016 and will produce premium pet foods made with fresh, regional ingredients. Burdzy described Kentucky as the perfect location for his company to make award-winning foods in the article The Champion of Pet Foods. “Kentucky’s rich agricultural heritage and proximity to ranches and farms make it the perfect location for making our award-winning foods,” he said. “We looked at several states, but as we learned more about Kentucky, we realized it was home.”


In addition to providing pets worldwide with foods made from local ingredients, Champion’s new kitchen is slated to create more than 147 jobs and stimulate the state’s thriving agricultural sector and economy.


“Kentucky offers the ‘can-do’ workforce that we need to succeed. The friendly, hard-working people of Kentucky possess an unbridled spirit that can help us build trust with pet lovers worldwide,” Burdzy told the publication.


To read the full article, visit the Kentucky Economic Development Guide online.


Gray Construction, a nationally ranked engineering, architecture and construction firm, was selected to provide design-build services for Champion’s new kitchen. Gray has more than 54 years of experience in manufacturing, automotive, food and beverage, distribution, hospitality and retail facility construction. Currently, Gray has several large projects that are underway or recently completed including: a Michelin Earthmover tire manufacturing plant in Anderson, S.C.; a Caterpillar Inc. manufacturing facility near Athens, Ga.; a Siemens gas turbine plant in Charlotte, N.C.; a Roxul, Inc. manufacturing facility in Byhalia, Miss.; a manufacturing plant for ZF Transmissions in Gray Court, S.C.; an Adena Beef facility in Fort McCoy, Fla.; and a Chelten House processing facility in Las Vegas, Nev.


If you have food and beverage plant construction needs, please contact Phil Seale, Executive Vice President, Manufacturing/Food & Beverage Groups at Or, contact Tyler Cundiff, Senior Manager, Business Development, Food & Beverage Group at

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