DUNKIRK, N.Y. (WIVB) — An ice cream manufacturing facility in Dunkirk has plans for a significant expansion that will add more than 200 new jobs, Governor Kathy Hochul announced Tuesday.

Wells Enterprises intends to create a “world-class ice cream plant” on its current property at 1 Ice Cream Dr., with New York State supporting the project with up to $10 million in tax credits and a $6 million grant from Empire State Development in exchange for job creation and capital investment commitments.

“The new, state-of-art ice cream manufacturing plant in Chautauqua County will create jobs and spur economic growth for years to come,” Hochul said in a release. “This project is a win for hundreds of plant workers, a victory for many local business partners that benefit from the facility, and an important success story for the region’s overall economy.” 

The Dunkirk facility plays a key role in Wells’ manufacturing expansion plans for its brands Blue Bunny, Halo Top, Bomb Pop and Blue Ribbon Classics. The plant is expected to double its current production capacity through the expansion while also retaining 401 jobs.

“We are extremely excited to build on the strength of our team in Dunkirk and continue to work with the community to grow and expand our operations here,” Liam Killeen, CEO of Wells Enterprises, said. “The investment in Dunkirk illustrates our passion to provide high-quality premium ice cream products that bring joy to consumers around the world. The planned expansion also reinforces our dedication to our team, consumers, and the community as a critical part of the long-term future of our company.” 

Construction will begin on the new facility in the last quarter of 2023 and include new production lines, cold storage and administrative office space. Wells will continue ice cream product manufacturing in the existing facility while construction on the new one takes place.

Adam Gorski is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team in 2022. You can find more of his work here.