Grants support Concord firms

The deadline is March 7 to apply for one of the latest round of building improvements grants from the nonprofit Concord Downtown Development Corp. Grants require a dollar-for-dollar match.

The application must be approved before work starts.

Three grant types are available:

The Jump Start Grant can be up to $1,500 for interior improvements related to a business startup.

The Sign Grant offers up to $350 for a new sign.

The Awning Grant awards up to $1,000 for a decorative awning.

For grant applications and details, visit or go to the CDDC office, 30 Cabarrus Ave. W., Concord.

Yogurt plant to hire up to 50

Statesville-based food processor Origin Food Group LLC will invest at least $7 million in its new Statesville plant and hire up to 50 workers by 2014, Gov. Bev Perdue announced at a recent ribbon-cutting ceremony for the plant.

Origin Food Group is a partnership between the Alarcón family of Ecuador and the Stameys of Iredell County. The families have a combined 60 years in the dairy farming and cattle business.

The plant, off Stamey Farm Road, will produce the company's new "früsh" line of drinkable yogurt and fruit shakes. The plant includes an add-on to an existing building.

The products include real fruit and yogurt blended with such healthy extras as probiotics and calcium.


Firm chooses Statesville

For the second time in a month, a Montreal-based textile-products company announced it's locating a U.S. sales and marketing office in Statesville.

Mikan Printing opened its Statesville office Jan. 30 in the Commerce Business Park. The firm is a family-owned and -operated business that specializes in printing on fabric, tags and sew-in labels.

Initially, three Mikan employees will be based in Statesville, primarily in sales. Mikan plans to have a manufacturing presence in the region, president Valerie Mikan said.

Mikan joins Montreal-based textile-products manufacturer Gildan Inc., which announced in December its intent to relocate its U.S. sales and marketing office to Statesville.