Since opening its doors in January, BMG Bakery has created more than 70 jobs for area residents, and that number is only expected to grow as the Ringgold manufacturer continues to expand its doughnut-making operation.
During a ribbon-cutting celebration and job fair last week, the Bluemont Group sought to hire about 25 more line-production bakers and delivery drivers to aid the plant as it distributes freshly baked pastries to Dunkin' Donuts stores throughout the region.
The plant was established to make the production process easier for the region's stores, said Athena Skellion, administrative manager at the area franchisee.
Before the bakery began its distribution, some Dunkin' Donut stores that made their own pastries in-house struggled to keep up with the process because of unpredictable circumstances.
"At 5 o'clock, the managers may get there and there's no product, or they have to come in the middle of the night to do it themselves," she said. "It's easier for store operations if they know that they have the products in the racks delivered and ready to go."
Each day, BMG Bakery produces approximately 480,000 doughnuts for 46 Dunkin' Donuts locations in nearby markets such as Knoxville, Atlanta, Chattanooga, Fort Oglethorpe and Murfreesboro, among others. Still, the franchisee is still looking to expand, with hopes of providing the sweet snack for more than 100 stores over time.
"[We] basically build a store a month," said Skellion, adding that Bluemont also delivers to Dunkin' Donut stores owned by other franchisees, like those in Nashville owned by Sweet Liberty, LLC. "We're continuing to grow, and as we ramp up production, we need more people."
The 28,000-square-foot bakery is the first of its kind built by Bluemont. Though it was constructed to handle production for the growing number of stores, Skellion said the franchisee may double the facility's size if there is enough demand.
"It's certainly a positive thing for the community in the form of jobs, and, as I understand it, good paying jobs for production line work," said Martha Eaker, president of the Catoosa County Chamber of Commerce.
In addition to providing quality jobs, Catoosa County Chairman Steven Henry said the industrial growth on what was once vacant land will lessen the property tax burden for citizens. He also said the residual effect of having employees driving into Ringgold each day would result in financial gains for the community.
"Obviously, they're going to stop and buy gas, they're going to stop at the convience store and they're going to go out for lunch. The money that's created just by them working is huge," Henry said. "If you keep them spending in the community it's just like a revolving effect: It just keeps giving back."
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