Finger Food Products Inc., a family-owned business, is embarking on a multimillion-dollar relocation and expansion in the Town of Wheatfield. The company held its ground-breaking ceremony Tuesday at its new location in the Vantage International Point industrial park.
"Finger Food Products Inc. is excited to be expanding into a new production facility, which will allow us to meet the increased demand for our Original Pizza Logs," said Jason R. Cordova, owner of Finger Food Products Inc. "We thank Gov. Cuomo for his support of this project, giving us the opportunity to supply our popular product to even more of the most premier sports venues in the United States."
Finger Food Products has served the Western New York community for more than 25 years. The business began in a small facility behind a convenience store in Niagara Falls, where its flagship product, the Original Pizza Logs, were all rolled individually by hand. Demand for the product grew throughout Western New York and spread across the Northeast.
"Over the last three decades, everyone has gotten to know the Original Pizza Logs as a popular local snack food," said Legislator Kathryn Lance of Wheatfield. "More than that, though, those of us involved in local government and economic development have gotten to know Original Pizza Logs as a strong local brand, committed to creating jobs and investing back in our community."
The new site project includes the construction of a new, $3.9 million, 30,000-square-foot food-grade facility in order to meet increased demand and expand into new markets. The project, also involving the purchase of new machinery and equipment, will retain 16 full-time, permanent jobs and create 11 new jobs.
"Original Pizza Logs are a staple for major sporting events both regionally and nationally, so we're thrilled the manufacturing facility is expanding in Niagara County," said state Sen. Rob Ortt. "The state-of-the-art facility will be alongside other well-known manufacturing companies at Vantage International Point industrial park, which will help it to succeed and thrive. More importantly, the move will retain full-time jobs and create new, entry-level jobs that will further grow and strengthen our local economy."
"I wanted to keep the business here (in Niagara County), where the business started and it was born, and I want it to grow (here)," Cordova said.
"I certainly appreciate the fact that you've chosen to stay here, that your jobs, your workers, are going to be staying here for years to come," Town of Wheatfield Supervisor Robert B. Cliffe told Cordova. "We look forward to more jobs in the future."
Finger Food Products will recruit employees from the inner cities of Niagara Falls and Buffalo, providing entry-level manufacturing positions, which could prepare lower-level skilled employees for future advancement.
"All of Niagara County should be proud of the success Finger Food Products is enjoying," said state Assemblyman John Ceretto. "The new location will enable them to have more orders rolling in and more pizza logs rolling out. I look forward to seeing this veteran-owned business continue to grow and provide jobs for people in the region."
New York state, through Empire State Development and its Excelsior job program, is providing up to $243,000 in performance-based tax credits over 10 years in return for Finger Food Products' proposed investment and job creation commitments.
"This completes site development at our industrial park. We are built out," Lance said. "We're grateful Empire State Development chose to join this venture and provide critical support for a locally grown company that has chosen to reinvest $3.2 million in our local economy, and create needed local jobs."
Finger Food Products has provided the food industry with Original Pizza Logs for more than two decades. Original Pizza Logs can be found at national and regional food service distributors, regional grocery supermarkets, and some of the largest pizzeria chains throughout the U.S. Original Pizza Logs can be found at professional baseball, football and hockey venues as partners of the Buffalo Bills, Buffalo Sabres and Pittsburgh Pirates.
Pictured: Community officials help CEO and owner of Finger Foods Inc. Jason Cordova and his family break ground at the company's future location in the Vantage International Point industrial park. From left: Cordova's wife, Jessica, and their daughter; Cordova; Clifford Mason, senior manager, National Fuel; Legislator Kathryn Lance of Wheatfield, chairwoman of the Economic Development Committee; Harry Francois, NYPA Western New York regional manager; and Bob Cliffe, Town of Wheatfield supervisor. (Photo by Lauren Zaepfel)