Business Boom

John McHenryTucker is undoubtedly one of the fastest-rising business destinations in the Metro Atlanta area.  Each month, the Business Boom will seek to show different examples of how Tucker’s business scene is flourishing.

Pepsi plant in Tucker, GA.What many may not know as they crisscross city roads is that there is a great deal of food made and distributed right out of the City of Tucker. From fresh bread to fortune cookies to Mountain Dew, they are all part of the national food manufacturing and distribution that is found in our backyard. During the pandemic, there has been an obvious stress on these businesses as they step up and meet all new safety requirements.

The PepsiCo Operations plant at 166 Rock Mountain Boulevard always starts with a “Safety First” mindset and now have put additional actions in place including advanced Personal Protective Equipment, intensive cleaning and sanitation throughout the facility, elimination of large group meetings to ensure social distancing management, and stringent health and wellness protocols to ensure that any COVID-19 contact or potential contact is properly managed to minimize spread of the virus. Still, the plant has remained 100 percent fully operational since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and even increased staffing to support increased business demand.

“This has been a tough time because employee and product safety is our number one priority, but we have leveraged our local trade and community networks to share best practices and problem solve issues including collaboration with the Tucker Summit Community Improvement District, the DeKalb Chamber, the Georgia Beverage Association, the Georgia Food Industry Association and the Georgia Association of Convenience Stores,” said Plant Manager Skip Vaughn. “We’ll come out of this stronger and safer.”

Further south is Dai Sing Noodles at 5430 East Ponce de Leon Avenue, which produces fortune cookies, egg roll skins, wonton skins and Lo Mein noodles. This 20-year-old company is the largest producer of fortune cookies in the southeast and, as their products are sold to restaurants, they have seen a drastic decrease in sales. President Sam Kok is taking the long view, as he loves his convenient location in Tucker.

“I grew up in a family that owned Chinese restaurants, but this is a niche commodity supported by my other businesses currently,” Kok explained. “I’m looking to good fortune and a full return to eating out.”

Further to the east is Thermo Pac, which provides ready to eat meal products including peanut butter, salsa, and jelly in a cup or pouch. They have experienced a record-breaking year with large contracts from the United States Department of Agriculture for school lunches. Like other food manufacturers, they have included mandatory practices of temperature taking, mask wearing, distance separation, hair nets, smocks, and hand and shoe sanitizers. They are continuing to increase their workforce and are currently looking for mechanics and operation technicians.

“Tucker has good public transit access, and we have a very stable work force with employees that have been with the company for many years,” said Director of Operations Victor Ortega. “We’re vigilant on addressing safety precautions during this pandemic but see a bright future here in Tucker.”

So wherever you’re dining, and whatever cuisine it might be, know that some of that food may have been created and packaged right here in Tucker.

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