Pacific Foods grows naturally
By Wendy Culverwell
Real Estate Daily editor
Chuck Eggert's Pacific Natural Foods has grown every year since its inception.
Pacific Natural Foods was in the right place at the right time when it began making soy milk products from a small complex on Tualatin Sherwood Road.
The natural foods industry was in its infancy when Chuck Eggert began Pacific Foods in 1987 and so too was the sleepy road abutting its corporate campus.
Today, the company is among the larger food processors in the region and certainly one of the most visible since it leased more than 300,000 square feet at a former Nike warehouse in Wilsonville.
Its products were confined at first to small stores specializing in natural foods. Later, Whole Foods Market added Pacific Foods brands to its stores, as did Fred Meyer and a growing number of grocers with sections catering to customers seeking natural and organic products.
|See a gallery of one of Pacific Foods' high-tech organic dairies. >>|
Today it produces about 150 items, from soy milk and chicken stock to pot pies and soups. It is a staple of mainstream groceries.
Rising demand for healthy and often organic products translated into double digit growth almost every year.
The company responded by adding more warehouses and production facilities at its Tualatin campus. Eventually, it ran out of space.
It is bordered by wetlands on one side. And Tualatin Sherwood Road became a busy four-lane highway on the other. Pacific Foods turned to Wilsonville when it needed more space and better access to the freeway.
In March, it leased 302,000 square feet for a warehouse and distribution center.
Pacific Foods isn’t quitting its Tualatin campus, where it has about 15 buildings. It is investing several million to pretreat wastewater before it enters the public sewer system.
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