Bel Brands USA in October opened its Mini BabyBel cheese facility in Brookings, S.D.
The $144 million facility, in the works since February 2012, is the largest capital expenditure in the history of Bel Group, which is based in France. Bel Brands USA Inc. is headquartered in Chicago.
The plant will use about 500,000 pounds of milk per day, purchased through two dairy co-ops in the region, Dairy Farmers of America and Land O’Lakes. Faithful+Gould (www.fgould.com) was project manager for the construction.
Bel Brands USA manufactures cheese products Mini Babybel, The Laughing Cow, and Boursin, as well as local brands including Merkts, Kaukauna, Price's Pimiento, Wispride and Owl’s Nest. Bel has nearly 900 employees in the U.S.