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Cape Cod Potato Chips expansion on hold as Campbell Soup Co reviews all capital projects

Cape Cod Potato Chips Plant in Hyannis, Massachusetts

The Cape Cod Potato Chips plant, located in Hyannis Mass., is now owned by Campbell Soup Co., acquired as part of its Snyder’s-Lance purchase.

A year after plans were announced for a $20 million expansion, the future of the Hyannis production facility is once again uncertain as Campbell is reviewing all capital expenditures.

Snyder’s-Lance was purchased by Campbell Soup Co. for $4.87 billion, allowing the soup maker to further cement its presence in a snack market that has grown increasingly competitive. The purchase, announced in December and finalized in March, included the 16 brands in the Snyder’s-Lance pretzel and chip portfolio, including the Cape’s signature snack.

The chip maker, under Snyder’s-Lance, received approval in 2017 from the Cape Cod Commission, a regional planning body, for a $20 million upgrade to its facility, adding more than 17,000 square feet to the site to provide more space for its manufacturing operations and improve the tour experience for visitors and guests.

The town’s site plan review approved the first phase of the project, the expansion of the administrative offices, earlier this year, but to date there has been no movement on the larger plans.

Campbell’s spokesman Thomas Hushen said in an email that there is “nothing new to report” on the status of the project.

Thomas Hushen:

“We are in the process of reviewing all of Snyder’s-Lance planned capital projects as part of our integration work.”

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Campbell’s expects to achieve $170 million in “cost synergies” by the end of its 2022 fiscal year, according to a statement put out in December when the purchase was announced.

Cape Cod Potato Chips was established in 1980 in a small Hyannis storefront before opening its Breeds Hill Road factory in 1985. Lance acquired Cape Cod Potato Chips in 1999; the company merged with Snyder’s of Hanover in 2010.

This is not the first time the chip company has faced an uncertain future.

When Lance bought the company in 1999, it announced plans to shutter the Hyannis facility; workforce investment officials, chamber executives and town leaders worked with Lance to allay its concerns and helped keep the production facility on the Cape.

The facility also escaped elimination after the 2010 Snyder’s purchase.

Barnstable Town Councilor John Flores, whose precinct includes the chip factory, said he has received verbal assurances the plant would remain in operation but has not heard any news about the expansion project.

John Flores:

“When I had a discussion months ago, they were looking at ways to keep it here.”

“I’ve said it before, but I don’t know how you make Cape Cod Chips off the Cape.”