Louisville Mayor Craig Greenberg and Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear joined state and local officials and leaders from pretzel manufacturer Stellar Snacks to announce the company’s commitment to invest $137 million and create 350 full-time Kentucky jobs over the next 10 years in west Louisville, the single largest economic development project the state has on record for the community over the past 20 years.
The investment by Stellar Snacks, a U.S. woman-owned pretzel manufacturer, will establish the company’s newest and largest industrial pretzel bakery in Louisville in an existing 434,000-square-foot building at 1391 Dixie Highway.
Work on the first-class manufacturing facility is scheduled to begin in March 2024 with the baking of the first products at the location in September 2024. Jobs created at the Louisville operation will consist of pretzel-makers – including master pretzel-maker and apprentice roles – production team members, engineering and maintenance managers, mechanics, technicians, receptionists and human resources assistants. Company leaders will partner with local community colleges and trade schools to provide real-word work experience and positions for students pursuing careers in industrial, electrical and robotic engineering.
Mayor Greenberg said in the announcement: “I am thrilled to celebrate Stellar Snacks’ decision to locate in west Louisville. This is a major announcement for the community, adding more than 300 quality jobs with a $137 million investment in one of our most underserved areas. Stellar Snacks is a company that shares our values of innovation, sustainability and diversity, and we are honored to welcome them to our city. I want to thank Gov. Andy Beshear, the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development and our economic development team at Louisville Metro Government for their hard work and collaboration in making this come to fruition. Together, we are building a brighter future for Louisville.”
Gov. Beshear added in the announcement: “I want to welcome Stellar Snacks to Kentucky and to west Louisville as this incredible project represents what we believe is the single largest investment and job-creation project in the community over the last several decades. Not only are we getting a growth-minded company that is creating hundreds of quality jobs in the area, but a company with leaders who truly want to engrain themselves in this wonderful community for years to come. Stellar Snacks is a perfect fit in so many ways, and I cannot wait to see the company grow and prosper here well into the future.”
Founded in 2019 by mother-daughter duo, Elisabeth and Gina Galvin, Stellar Snacks bakes pretzels and roasts nuts. The company currently operates two plants in northern Nevada, where it employs more than 170 people. Stellar Snacks is certified woman-owned by the National Women Business Owners Corporation (NWBOC). It distributes products to more than 5,000 grocery and retail stores nationwide with products also sold online and offered during in-flight snack service on Alaska Airlines, JetBlue and American Airlines. Stellar products include pretzel braids in four gourmet flavors – Simply Stellar, Maui Monk, Bold & Herby and Sweet & Sparky – with new flavors and product innovation coming in early 2024.
Leaders at Stellar Snacks have expressed a dedication to community involvement, environmental stewardship, social responsibility and advocacy, including support of emerging artists from around the globe to design artwork for the company's packaging. Initiatives include sponsorship and support of events that empower women, social good, music, fashion and art, from Women in Tech to Female DJs to Women in Professional Sports, as well as educational programs, local art shows, music festivals and more.
Elisabeth Galvin, co-founder of Stellar Snacks, said in the announcement: “We are thrilled to share that our business has seen astronomical growth after launching our brand in 2021, thanks to our people, passion and exquisite product. Since then, we have been on a mission to expand production coast to coast. We are proud to announce that we have selected Louisville as our home in the Midwest. The outcome will be an important success story for our team and the people of the great state of Kentucky. We can’t emphasize enough that our goal is to provide career opportunities and positive impact in Louisville, especially in our neighborhood so we can flourish together in the years to come.”
Gina Galvin, co-founder of Stellar Snacks, added: “When my mom and I landed in Louisville, something finally clicked – it felt like destiny. Beyond our passion for baking delicious, high-quality snacks, we believe every pretzel has a purpose. That’s why we commission emerging artists to design one-of-a-kind artwork for our bags and engage with the arts community to inspire creativity in the world around us. The energy of the kind-hearted, driven people in Louisville and the creativity flowing through this historic city align perfectly with our values. We truly look forward to growing with this community.”
The project is contingent upon final approval of state incentives by the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority; the incentives are not related to the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program currently in place for the West End Opportunity Partnership. These incentives may include support for rail access to the building and per-job grants with added benefits for the hiring of individuals who reside in the nine neighborhoods that comprise the West End Opportunity area.