MENASHA – City leaders hope what they have called a liability can be turned into dozens of new jobs.
The city has agreed to sell the former River St. Power Plant to Simply Incredible Foods. The company, based in Port Edwards, plans to use the building to make sweet frozen cranberries and cranberry juice. Simply Incredible Foods has a patent on its process for sweetening the berries without adding sugar.
The city-owned plant provided power to residents for more than 50 years until it became a steam plant 10 years ago, but that operation had cost the taxpayers millions of dollars. So, the city shut it down five years ago. The building’s been vacant since – and the city has spent $70,000 a year to maintain it.
Menasha officials say the company paid $1 to buy the building, but as a condition of the sale, Simply Incredible Foods is responsible for making several improvements to make it suitable for food processing.
Area business leaders say the facility could bring about 80 new jobs to Menasha.