Five-year abatement approved for WellPet

Mishawaka, Ind. The Mishawaka Common Council unanimously approved a five-year tax abatement for WellPet Monday night.

The natural pet food manufacturer will use the abatement on a $2 million regrinding machine. The equipment will reduce the company's waste by allowing it to use pet food byproducts that are currently discarded.

"Today, that product goes to the landfill if it's not prime," said WellPet Controller Michelle Tatgenhorst. "So, we'll be able to reduce the landfill waste here in the county as well as allowing us to increase our productivity."

That means the manufacturer will have to increase its workforce slightly. WellPet plans to add six employees once they install the machine, with the possibility for more expansion down the line.

"In the last year, we've had a least a 10 percent increase in our actual demand," Tatgenhorst said. "So, that's very good for us locally and for a company as a whole."

WellPet nearly doubled its staff a couple years ago when it started a $20 million expansion.

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