Nestlé Plans To Spend $42 Million Creating 'Culinary Hubs' In Ukraine

Since the start of the war between Russia and Ukraine began, Nestlé Global has shown support for its employees and citizens based in Ukraine, and it announced additional plans to do so on December 12. Confectionary Production reported in April that Nestlé had donated about 40 million servings of food and drink to Ukrainians, converting their Kharkiv facility into a donation hub. Nestlé, which currently employs 5,800 Ukrainian workers, managed to keep its operations open, primarily in the western part of the country and has offered jobs to displaced employees at locations that are still operating. 

However, the number of Ukrainians employed by Nestlé is set to increase as the company says it plans to invest $42.88 million to build a production facility on the western side, Reuters reported. The outlet indicates that most international companies have shied away from investing in Ukraine since the war began in February.

On its website, Nestlé outlines its commitment to Ukraine and says it has reduced its operations in Russia by no longer advertising there, as well as stopping all non-essential imports and exports into and out of Russia. This is in line with many companies like McDonalds, which have paused business in Russia.

1,500 new jobs to be created

Once constructed, the new Nestlé facility in Ukraine will employ about 1,500 people, per Reuters. The production operation will be located in Smolyhiv in the Volyn region. A timeline was not provided for the new location's opening, but Nestlé said the facility will make instant foods, soups, sauces, and seasonings. Reuters reports that the food made in Smolyhiv will be distributed in Ukraine and other European countries.

"We aim to create a food and culinary hub, ensuring incremental jobs and serving the needs of Ukrainians and all European citizens with high-quality products," said Alessandro Zanelli, Nestlé chief executive officer for the South Eastern Europe Market, in a statement. 

The intent of creating another manufacturing facility in Ukraine will strengthen food security in the nation, and also help its economy, which has suffered since the Russians occupation, per The Peninsula. Nestlé also said it has provided 4,000 metric tons of products to Ukrainians who have been forced to flee the country, as well as those who remain.