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Historic Golden Flake Facility To Take on New Life Through Retail, Warehouse Space

The old Golden Flake plant near downtown Birmingham is being redeveloped for mixed use. (CCR Architecture & Interiors)
Alabama NewsCenter

An iconic Alabama brand may no longer be locally owned, but the place where countless Golden Flake potato chips were once cooked up and shipped out is about to be reborn as a mixed-use development.

The former Golden Flake manufacturing plant, just west of downtown Birmingham, is in the hands of new owners with plans to redevelop the site for retail and warehouse space, according to multiple news accounts.

The Factory at Golden Flake. (CCR Architecture & Interiors)

The “Factory at Golden Flake” already has an anchor tenant: Southeastern Salvage plans to move its store from Irondale to a warehouse building in the new development in 2025 after $3 million to $4 million in improvements are made at the site, according to the news reports. The new store will occupy 135,000 square feet – double the size of its current retail space, officials with Southeastern Salvage said.

The 37-acre property was a production facility for Golden Flake for more than 50 years. In 2016, Birmingham-based Golden Enterprises, maker of Golden Flake snacks, was sold to Pennsylvania-based Utz Quality Foods Inc. Utz closed the  Birmingham production facility in 2023.

Golden Flake got its start in downtown Birmingham in 1923 as Magic City Foods, in the basement of the original Hill’s grocery store, according to the site Bhamwiki. In 1958 it moved production to the site of the old Alice Furnaces, one of the original blast furnaces in the city.

The new owners of the site, a Tennessee-based investment group, are working with Birmingham-based CCR Architecture & Interiors of Birmingham to redevelop the property, according to al.com. The property is just west of Interstate 65 on the edge of the city’s Titusville neighborhood.