Poppelmann Plastics has announced that a new manufacturing site will be in the United States within the next couple of weeks. While a specific location has not been announced, general sales manager Jack Shelton says a location in the Southeast is favored, and the final agreements and approvals are currently underway. "We have a lot of people that would like to have some assurance that we are going to be here," said Shelton. "What we’re doing is making an announcement of the announcement."
"Our board’s decision to start a manufacturing operation for horticultural products in the USA demonstrates our strong and long-term commitment to our U.S. customers," says Guido Schmidt, managing director of the German parent company Poppelmann Holding. "While this is our first overseas investment and requires a very thorough preparation and therefore some time, we hope we can start the construction very soon."
Poppelmann, a 54-year-old company headquartered in Lohne, Germany, has been selling to the United States for over 25 years. It developed its sales center in the United States, Poppelmann Plastics USA, Inc. about three years ago and has been planning a U.S. manufacturing site since then. "As soon as volume reached a certain level, the decision from the onset was to have a manufacturing facility here," said Shelton.
Poppelmann Plastics offers a wide range of polypropylene thermoformed and injection-molded pots with printing on the pot surface. The pots come in various sizes and shapes so customers can choose which pot will work best in their greenhouses. The company also produces carrying trays for the pot sizes, allowing growers to order pots and trays that fit together.
Poppelmann has more than 1,100 employees, and it has subsidiaries in France and Spain. It is the European market leader for horticultural plant pots, and it also has three non-horticultural divisions in the food, medical and cosmetic industries. The company’s first few years in the United States will be dedicated to the main operation of horticulture products, but over a five-to-ten-year plan, it will expand into its other markets.
When asked about the benefits of this U.S. manufacturing site, Jack Shelton said, "It will give us a greater opportunity to help the growers. Right now, we’re shipping from Germany, so we could reduce our lead times from four to five weeks down to within-the-week delivery. And we’re working on printing and labeling situation, which sometimes could work six to ten week, but we could work down to two to three weeks."