ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Ready Roast Nut Company plans to create 200 new jobs in Portales over the next few years, Gov. Susana Martinez announced Monday.
Ready Roast, which recently purchased the Portales Peanut Plant, will create 30 of those jobs immediately, with full benefits, as the company plans to start production for the fall harvest season, according to a release from the Governor’s Office. It will initially shell peanuts and expand business to include production of value-added products.
Ready Roast sits on 70 acres and has a 53,000-square-foot peanut shelling facility and warehouse, along with storage capacity for about 28 million pounds of farmer stock peanuts, along with several other large warehouses.
The company also has planted 5,000 acres of organic and conventional Valencia peanuts. They have growing contracts for their peanuts that will be supplied to the dairy, snack food, bakery, confectionary, and other food industries.
“Food production is one of our target industries — they bring good-paying jobs to the state and bring new dollars to our economy,” said Economic Development Secretary Jon Barela.
“Ready Roast is proud to expand its operations into New Mexico and grateful for the support of Gov. Martinez, Secretary Barela and bipartisan members of the Legislature who have created a competitive environment to do business,” said Tom Finn, president of Ready Roast.
Ready Roast Nut Company was established in California in 2006 by a trio of professionals from the food processing industry who saw an opportunity to address the growing demand for value-added tree nuts. Since its founding, the company has expanded to three operations in California and now into Eastern New Mexico.
Ready Roast is taking over the old Sunland plant, which closed in October 2013 on the heels of a financially devastating federal shutdown. The plant was ordered closed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration after a nationwide salmonella poisoning was linked to the Sunland operation.