AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Founded 30 years ago by Garth Merrick, Merrick Pet Care has seen continued growth over the years, but especially this year, where it has doubled the capacity of its operations in Hereford.
"We've doubled our revenues and we've doubled our investment into the Hereford and Amarillo areas,” said Tim Simonds, CEO of Merrick Pet Care. “In Hereford, we have built a second dry plant that makes our kibble and a second wet plant that makes our wet canned pet food."
To keep up with the business' physical growth, Merrick added more than 150 jobs in the local community this year.
“Our job growth here has been pretty phenomenal. This past year we’ve added over 150 full-time positions,” said April Lytle, a human resources manager for Merrick Pet Care. “Within our operations, we added on to our dry pet expansion and we also added another new cannery facility which is right here on campus, as well.”
Creating specialty pet food and care, Merrick says the large expansion in operations has not had a substantial impact on the local-produced foods they put out.
"We try to keep the home-grown feel of our product and not a lot has changed about our ingredients or the products, it's just we have a lot more people who have input and helping us create better recipes,” said Janika Hull, a research and development manager for Merrick Pet Care.
As for the impact on the area economy, Lytle says the company’s growth helps encourage spending locally.
"From just ordering catering and luncheon meals from all the trainings we're having to just the growth and the money that's in the pockets of our operators who are getting paid out here and spending their hard-earned dollars in Hereford, it is truly growing,” said Lytle.
Merrick’s CEO says he hopes the company continues to impact the community’s work force.
"Being able to have that type of an effect on the community, hiring, creating career paths, creating a place where people can see themselves working for the next 10 years, our entire team is tremendously proud of what we’re trying to do here,” said Simonds.
Following the recent growth, the company expects to surpass $500 million in sales for 2018.