Lamb Weston Holdings, Inc. is investing approximately $250 million to expand its french fry processing capacity at its Hermiston, Ore., facility. The project is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019.

The expansion includes the construction of a 300-million-lb per-year french fry line and is expected to add about 170 full-time positions. The new line is intended to support growth in North America, as well as exports to Asia where demand growth has been strong, Lamb Weston said.

Tom Werner, Lamb Weston
Tom Werner, president and c.e.o. of Lamb Weston

“The french fry category has been growing at attractive rates around the world, and we believe industry capacity has been challenged in recent years to keep up with continued growth in market demand,” said Tom Werner, president and chief executive officer of Lamb Weston. “This investment in a new french fry processing line in the Columbia Basin reflects Lamb Weston’s continued commitment to support our strategic partners as they continue to grow their businesses in North America and abroad.”

The new Hermiston french fry line will be modeled on Lamb Weston’s recently operational production line in Richland, Wash.

The total investment for the new line is expected to be approximately $250 million, with capital expenditures of approximately $25 million and $225 million in fiscal years 2018 and 2019, respectively.