KeHE Distributors is expanding operations and services at distribution centers in Aurora, Colo., and Chino, Calif. to support its rapid growth and keep up with the needs of retail customers new and old.
Naperville, Ill.-based KeHE said yesterday that, on Aug. 31, it plans to unveil the Aurora DC’s 124,000-square-foot expansion, which is earmarked for new, independent grocery clients and includes 33% more freezer space, 66% more cooler space and 43% more dry grocery space.
“KeHE is thrilled to announce this expansion, especially in such a key location,” Chris Graas, vice president of sales at KeHE, said in a statement. “Our goal is to continue to provide exceptional and expanded service to the region. Since Colorado is a hub for product innovation and sustainability within the food and beverage industry, KeHE is committed to having a significant impact and presence in this community. By establishing an innovation destination and creating a place to experience ‘KeHE Goodness’, we are eager to expand our scope and business in Boulder to better serve our partners.”
The expansion of the Aurora DC also will bring new jobs to the Aurora and Boulder areas, including selector, forklift operator and receiver positions, KeHE added. “Aurora is proud to have KeHE Distributors in our city and honored that they have chosen our city to expand their facility here,” Aurora Mayor Mike Coffman stated.
Late last week, KeHE announced that it has extended its KeHE CONNECT Direct digital fulfillment network to include its Chino DC, making it available to West Coast retailers. The Chino facility joins three fulfillment centers supporting the CONNECT Direct service.
Launched in June, KeHE CONNECT Direct offers retail partners an expanded assortment options for dry, refrigerated and frozen items, including products not available in their home distribution center and items in smaller quantities, such as eaches, case or cut-case. The program can supply more offerings from categories such as natural and organic, specialty and fresh products, including hard-to-find protein, bakery, bulk and cheese products. The streamlined service features fast delivery times with orders shipped in one to three days in the contiguous United States.
An employee-owned, B Corp-certified company, KeHE supplies natural, organic, fresh and specialty food, groceries and other products to more than 30,000 natural food stores, supermarket chains, independent grocery stores, online retailers, retail pharmacies, convenience stores, foodservice providers and specialty retailers across North America.
KeHE earlier this year added grocery retail cooperative Allegiance Retail Services as a primary distribution customer and expanded distribution of natural and specialty products with Publix Super Markets. And in December, KeHE opened its 17th distribution center, a 500,000-square-foot facility in Goodyear, Ariz. The launch of the new DC, announced in October, followed the openings of a 377,000-square-foot DC in West Ellettsville, Ind., in November 2020 and a 550,000-square-foot DC in North East, Md., in October 2020.