United Natural Foods to add 150 jobs at RI headquarters

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – United Natural Foods Inc., a Fortune 500 company headquartered in Rhode Island, is planning to hire 150 more full-time workers by 2020 in exchange for state tax credits, Gov. Gina Raimondo’s administration announced Wednesday.

UNFI is a major distributor of natural, organic, and specialty foods, employing more than 9,800 workers in 34 distribution centers across the U.S. and Canada.

The company has approximately 450 employees in Rhode Island and has been headquartered in Providence since 2009.

“We’ve long been proud that UNFI calls Rhode Island home, and today we’re pleased that it’s decided to grow here,” Raimondo said in a statement.

“The business climate we’ve worked to foster over the past couple of years is one that’s mutually beneficial for businesses and our residents,” she continued. “And we’re careful to ensure that the opportunities we create pay off in both the short and long terms.”

The amount of tax credits the company will receive has not been announced. A spokesman for the R.I. Commerce Corporation said the number is still being worked out.

Commerce said UNFI intends to hire 100 new full-time workers by the end of 2018 and an additional 50 by 2020. To accommodate the increased workforce, UNFI said it’s working to secure a long-term lease at an unspecified Providence-area site.

“We look forward to expanding our presence in Rhode Island with the opening of our shared services center, which will enable us to drive greater efficiencies and improve the customer experience as we further simplify and standardize our supplier and customer interactions,” stated UNFI President and CEO Steven L. Spinner.

UNFI will hold an open house for prospective employees on March 1 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at its Providence headquarters, located at 313 Iron Horse Way. Visit the company’s website to learn more and submit an application.