Ice cream company grows in Roane County

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By Damon Lawrence

Blue Bell Ice Cream announced on Monday that the substantial expansion of its Roane County distribution center is now complete.

The project, which started in January, takes the facility from less than 2,000 square feet to 12,500 square feet.

“Our newly expanded facility will allow us to better serve the Knoxville and Johnson City markets,” branch manager Ricky Holladay said in a statement. “We are very appreciative of all the support we have received from our customers in the markets that we serve.”

The distribution center is located in Roane Regional Business and Technology Park. Blue Bell said the bigger facility includes an expanded cold storage freezer, a dry storage warehouse and an office area.

“Our future here is very promising, and we are looking forward to many years providing Blue Bell to all of East Tennessee,” Holladay said. A ribbon cutting ceremony is set for Aug. 13.

Headquartered in Texas, Blue Bell’s products are available in 23 states. Distribution centers like the one in Roane allow the company to do direct store delivery, which means its employees are the only ones who touch the ice cream until it is delivered to stores.