Swiss food giant Nestle said Monday it was opening a new production site in war-torn Ukraine, and would invest tens of millions in a factory and production network set to employ 1,500 people.
“Nestle is announcing the opening a new production site in Ukraine,” the company, which had three facilities in Ukraine before the war broke out, said in a statement.
It said that “40 million Swiss francs ($43 million) will be invested in production in Smolyhiv located in Volyn region, in the western part of the country.”
The aim was to increase “the capacity of noodles culinary production in Ukraine”, the company said, adding that it also wanted to help support growth of the Ukrainian economy, which has been ravaged since Russia’s full-scale invasion in February.
“I am proud to confirm our commitment to invest in Ukraine,” Alessandro Zanelli, head of Nestle’s South Eastern Europe Market division, said in the statement.
“This is an important move for Nestle, taken in a very challenging time for the country.”
Along with the existing Torchyn factory, the Volyn production network will become Nestle’s European regional hub for food and culinary products.
“The Hub will employ 1,500 people and aim to supply both Ukrainian and all other European markets,” the statement said.
Nestle also highlighted that it had since the start of the war been providing humanitarian aid of “necessary food and drinks for Ukrainians and their pets”.
It said it had donated more than 4,000 tonnes of products to support Ukrainians both inside Ukraine and who have fled to neighbouring countries.