US food packaging company Wright Foods aims to inject $53m over the next five years to expand its food processing and packaging operations in Troy, North Carolina (NC).
The move will create 505 jobs in Montgomery County, expanding on Wright's existing employee base of around 80.
Wright uses new technology developed at NC State University known as aseptic processing to package its products.
The technology saves energy, packaging materials and distribution costs. It also improves shelf life and the quality of products without the need for preservatives or refrigeration.
NC Governor Pat McCrory said that helping existing businesses grow and expanding operations in NC is one of his top priorities.
"It's always encouraging when homegrown companies choose to reinvest in our state," he said.
The project was partly made possible by a performance-based grant from the One NC Fund that could rise to $1.5m.
Other partners include the NC Department of Commerce, NC Community Colleges, the Golden LEAF Foundation, the NC Rural Economic Development Center, Montgomery County, the Montgomery Economic Development Corporation, the town of Biscoe and the town of Troy.
NC secretary of commerce Sharon Decker said: "Companies like Wright Foods choose to do business in North Carolina because we provide them with the tools they need to succeed."
The One NC Fund provides financial assistance through local governments to encourage business projects to locate in the state.
Image: NC Governor Pat McCrory. Photo: courtesy of Hal Goodtree.