BEAR — After construction delays due to an unusually wet winter and obtaining permits, Dot Foods has begun the process of hiring more than 100 people in 30 roles for its new distribution center.
Dot Foods, the largest food industry redistributor in North America, now expects to open the 188,000-square-foot facility at 301 American Blvd., near the intersection of Red Lion and Wrangle Hill roads in early February. The company had hoped to open its 12th distribution center this fall, but now expects to open with about 45 trucks and increase that to 75 by the end of 2020, said Dot Foods Delaware General Manager Joe Little.
Companies like Mt. Sterling, Ill.-based Dot Foods buys full truckloads from more than 900 manufacturers and consolidates their products in distribution centers across the United States. Dot Foods then resells these products in more manageable LTL quantities to distributors.
The new $36 million distribution center will include offices; dry, refrigerated, and frozen warehouse space; and a truck yard and garage to service Dot’s fleet. The company has a temporary terminal lot in New Castle that serves a fleet for 25 drivers the company has already hired.
“We’re dealing right now with a nationwide driver shortage and will hire as many drivers as we can,” Little said. Dot Foods’ drivers’ salaries are guaranteed in writing, and experienced drivers who handle freight will earn $75,000 in their first year.