Melster Candies leaving longtime Cambridge facility for Janesville
Sources have told the Gazette that Melster Candies will move its manufacturing operation from Cambridge to Janesville, where the high-volume candy maker will lease a 102,000-square-foot building at 4017 Whitney St.
The building, the most recent home of MCI Mechanical Contractors, will be renovated for the manufacture of Melster's product line.
Henry and Arthur Melster established the company in Cambridge in 1919. Warrell Corp. acquired it in 1982 and sold it in 2004 to Impact Confections of Colorado Springs, Colo.
Impact is the largest manufacturer of 3-D lollipops in the United States and owns the extreme sour brand Warheads.
Officials from Melster in Cambridge and Impact in Colorado were not available Monday afternoon to provide more specifics on the move to Janesville.
In Cambridge, Melster employs about 85 people and 30 additional workers on a seasonal basis. A majority of the Cambridge workers are expected to follow their jobs to Janesville, about 30 miles away.
"This project demonstrates the critical roles that geographic proximity, right-sized real estate and value-added partnerships play in a site selection decision," said James Otterstein, Rock County's economic development manager. "We congratulate all of the parties involved and welcome Melster Candies into Rock County's expanding food-related industry cluster."
Otterstein said the addition of Melster should provide some stability to a building that over the last decade has seen significant tenant turnover.
Bill Mears of McGuire Mears & Associates in Janesville represented the building's landlord in the lease agreement.