Opening festivity at Blue Diamond in Turlock

local@modbee.comJune 17, 2013 

Plant manager Ulli Thiersch leads a tour Tuesday of the packaging area at a Blue Diamond facility under construction in Turlock. The first of three phases will provide state-of-the-art technology to manufacture and deliver almond products worldwide. The company said last week it will hire up to 100 employees by May.

DEBBIE NODA — Modesto Bee

— Grand opening ceremonies, including ribbon-cutting and a presentation, are planned for 10 a.m. today at Blue Diamond's Fulkerth Road plant in Turlock.

Blue Diamond, the world's largest almond processor, employs about 900 people in Sacramento and 400 in Salida.

The Turlock plant will have about 10 managerial positions and 100 plant jobs when it opens its first phase. Hiring has been under way for those positions.

The first phase brings the plant to about 200,000 square feet. Two more phases will bring the size to about 500,000 square feet within 15 years.

California grows about 75 percent of the world's almonds, which are the state's No. 1 farm export.

They are second only to milk in gross income among farm products in the Northern San Joaquin Valley.

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