Mars Petcare Opens Innovation Center
Mars Petcare opened its new $110 million Global Innovation Center in Thompson’s Station, Tenn. The facility will serve as the global research and development center for the company’s portfolio, which includes Pedigree, Whiskas, Cesar, Iams and others. It will focus on natural and mainstream dry cat and dog food.
Franklin, Tenn.-based Mars Petcare chose the location in Thompson’s Station in part because of its ongoing relationship with the state of Tennessee. Mars already has facilities in Cleveland, Chattanooga, Lebanon and Franklin. The new facility features four buildings. The 39,904-square-foot Quality & Innovation Center houses research and development associates working in an office setting, in addition to a state-of-the-art microbiological and analytical laboratory. Workers at the 56,589-square-foot Product Development Center will develop new technologies and products on a small scale before full-scale production is implemented. The 28,461-square-foot Pet Feeding Center is where up to 180 dogs and 120 cats will live, many of which will be adopted from area shelters and rescues. The 10,302-square-foot Learning Center features an interactive learning environment, a Mars history museum for guests, space for focus groups, a conference center, a workout room and break areas for Mars Petcare associates.
The building also boasts a U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification. To earn the certification, the project maximized open space with energy-efficient products designed to consume at least 28 percent less energy than code-compliant buildings. All four buildings also feature low-flow plumbing fixtures to reduce potable water consumption by at least 40 percent.