Confectionery giant Haribo’s new £35m factory in Castleford, which will create almost 300 jobs, is starting to take shape.
Work on the plant off Whitwood Common Lane started in October.
The new facility, which is being developed by Wates Construction, is due to be complete by April 2015 and fully operational by autumn of the same year.
Development at the site is now visible from the M62 motorway and construction of the first staircase for the production factory is now complete.
David Price, business unit director at Wates Construction, said: “Increased manufacturing presence in Yorkshire is going to be key to the region’s economic growth and it’s a very exciting time as Haribo’s investment and vision for its new facility begins to take shape.
“We have been working very closely with Haribo’s domestic and international teams to ensure that the development addresses their operational needs, whilst enhancing their production capacity.”
Haribo, which also has a factory in Pontefract, was awarded £6.4m from the government as part of the Regional Growth Fund in 2011 for the development of the former Pioneer Technologies.
The new plant, which will produce around 48,000 tonnes of treats per year, was built due to its Pontefract facility operating near to capacity.
Herwig Veenekens, managing director of Haribo, said: “It’s great to finally see the new factory take shape, we are pleased with the progress to date and are excited by the opportunity that this new facility presents.
“It’s great to be so close to where we already are. There is a skilled workforce in this industry around here and the history speaks for itself.
“I think we definitely see this area as our home and an increase in demand has meant that we have had to expand.”
Business secretary Vince Cable toured the site when Haribo officially unveiled their plans in October.
He said the factory would bring a boost to the local economy.
Mr Cable said: “This will be a big boost to people in this area. It’s really good news and extremely pleasing to see a firm expanding.
“It’s a great credit to the company that they’re able to do it at this time.”
The new facility will include a 30,700 sq ft three-storey manufacturing unit and a four-storey office.
The site will also have a steel-framed energy centre and sub-station, which will power the facility.
It has also seen 300 construction jobs created on the site, which is just off the M62 at junction 31.
Haribo first brought production to the area when it bought into the former Dunhill’s factory in Pontefract, the first producers of Pontefract Cakes, in 1972, acquiring full control of the company in 1992.
It currently employs 540 staff at the site on Front Street, in Pontefract.
Recruitment for the new plant has already started, with 15 people having already joined the Haribo team at its Pontefract base.
Roles at the new factory will range from machine operations to management positions.
The plant will run alongside the Pontefract base.