Southern Champion Tray broke ground on a $60 million expansion in the Centre South Riverport Industrial Park on Wednesday morning. The new facility will add more than 300,000 square feet of manufacturing space to its current Chattanooga operations, converting paperboard into packaging products utilizing the latest manufacturing technology.
Construction is expected to be completed by early 2023, and is being built by Hoar Construction. This first phase of construction is one of four phases planned for the site. In addition to this building, SCT will maintain three other facilities in Chattanooga with a combined footprint over 1 million square feet.
As part of the expansion, SCT will create more than 150 new jobs in Hamilton County over the next seven years with an emphasis on training and development as well as a strong desire to attract new team members from the communities closest to the Centre South site.
The modern, air-conditioned facility will provide numerous opportunities for all types of manufacturing positions, ranging from entry level, to various types of skilled machine operator roles.
According to Chief Operations Officer Brian Hunt, “Today’s ground breaking follows the culmination of work from an amazing team at Southern Champion Tray. While our growing company had maximized all operations in three states, a new large-scale site was needed. Mayor Coppinger and his team were instrumental in providing support and guidance in finding a location to support our continued growth in Hamilton County. Similarly, helping us extend our roots deeper in Chattanooga was a goal of Steve Hiatt of the Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce while the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development and the Tennessee Valley Authority have provided substantial assistance to make this a reality. For their extensive work, we are appreciative and grateful.”
President and CEO John Zeiser added “SCT has been blessed to grow and thrive in this community for almost 95 years. We look forward to continuing that growth in a manner that is good for our team members and good for our community.”
SCT manufactures and distributes paperboard packaging products including food trays, window boxes, cupcake inserts and others.
More recently, the company has created a new tamper-evident packaging system for use by restaurants and food delivery services. The Guarantab, dubbed “Fort Knox in a box,” securely locks the container so that customers will know their food has not been disturbed during the delivery process.
Headquartered in Chattanooga, SCT is a third generation, family-owned company. SCT employs more than 800 people and produces over 500 stock products for customers in the foodservice and baking industries. In addition, the company provides custom packaging solutions for customers across a number of industries.