Project will create more than 15 new jobs with a capital investment of $700,000

LIVE OAK, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott announced that International Mulch Company (IMC), the global leader in 100 percent recycled rubber products for landscaping and playground applications, has opened its fourth manufacturing and distribution facility in Suwannee County. The expansion will add more than 15 jobs with a $700,000 capital investment in the region.

Governor Scott said, “We are on a mission to make Florida the number one destination for jobs, and today we are another step closer as we announce the creation of new jobs in Live Oak. Manufacturers like International Mulch Company are growing in Florida, which means more opportunities for Floridians to find a job and provide for their families.”

The 80,000 square foot plant, located in Live Oak, will serve as a Southeast manufacturing and distribution center for DIY and mass merchant retailers.  In addition, this new facility will allow IMC to expand its presence for the commercial sales team that services parks and recreation departments, schools, municipalities and government agencies.

“It is always a great feeling when we can give a once discarded product a useful second life and help an area recycle on a scale that was previously unknown,” says Cindy Miller, CEO of International Mulch Company.  “Since our family-owned and operated company was founded fifteen years ago we have recycled nearly 450,000,000 pounds of rubber into our ever-growing line of 100% recycled rubber products.”

With this new location, IMC now operates manufacturing and distribution centers in four states, including Florida. The project will further benefit the state as IMC will source all raw materials from Florida. This means nearly 750,000 tires previously destined for landfills will be recycled into more than 12 million pounds of products.

“Our company has been looking to expand to this area of the country for a number of years, and after a sustained search throughout the region, and with the assistance of Enterprise Florida, we knew that the most strategic location for our next facility was Suwannee County,” says Tim Miller, COO for IMC.  “Transportation lines are ideal to serve our major retail partners in addition to lowering shipping costs to municipalities, schools and residential customers throughout the region.”

Since starting the company with a single product, Rubberific Premium Shredded Rubber Mulch in 2000, the company now produces and distributes more than 100 products to retailers in the U.S., Canada and around the world.

Florida’s manufacturing sector ranks among the top 10 nationwide with more than 18,200 companies employing some 317,000 people statewide. Florida offers a competitive environment with no sales tax on manufacturing equipment as well as a highly-educated workforce that all helps businesses grow.

Enterprise Florida President & CEO Bill Johnson said, “Florida has made great progress in increasing its manufacturing base. Companies like International Mulch Company are helping us tell the story of the state’s pro-business climate and we look forward to their continued growth.”

This project was made possible with the help of close partnerships between Enterprise Florida, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and Suwannee County.

Florida Department of Economic Opportunity Executive Director Jesse Panuccio said, “The manufacturing sector in Florida ranks among the top ten in the nation, and the addition of the International Mulch Company manufacturing and distribution center further bolsters the state’s industry. The Suwannee County facility will provide at least 15 Floridians with jobs over the next two years and shows why Florida’s manufacturing friendly policies help make the Sunshine State the perfect climate for business.”

Dr. Alvin B. Jackson, Jr., Economic Development Director of Suwannee County said, “We are excited about International Mulch becoming a part of the Suwannee County community. As Florida’s New Frontier for welcoming new businesses to Florida, our unique highway interchange system will be a major asset for IMC. The Suwannee County Commission and the residents of Suwannee County not only applaud International Mulch for creating sustainable jobs, but for its environmental mission of recycling discarded rubber tires for usable products.”

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International Mulch Company (IMC) is a family-owned and operated business with its corporate headquarters located in St. Louis, Missouri and production facilities in Illinois, Maryland, California and Florida.  We manufacture long-lasting landscaping and playground products made from 100 percent recycled rubber tires.  To date we have recycled more than 450,000,000 pounds of rubber under the Rubberific®, NuPlay®, Re-Play®, NuScape® and Lasting Beauty® brand names.

Enterprise Florida, Inc. (EFI) is a partnership between Florida’s business and government leaders, and is the principal economic development organization for the state of Florida.  EFI facilitates job growth for Florida businesses through recruitment and retention, international trade and exporting, promotion of sporting events, and capital funding programs to assist small and minority businesses.

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