Rochester’s top job and business recruiter says 2022 set records

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. The region’s top job recruiter says 2022 set records for jobs and new business. That includes a company that started with a farmer’s market stand and is now the fastest-growing hummus brand in America.

“More sales of Ithaca Hummus means more jobs in Rochester,” said Chris Kirby, founder and CEO of Ithaca Hummus. “We make the freshest hummus you can buy in a grocery store today. We’re the number one fastest-growing premium hummus brand in the country. And all of our product is made in Rochester, New York and we ship it all over the country.”

Ithaca Hummus started squeezing lemons 10 years ago and sold what they made at farmer’s markets. Now the hummus is made at LiDestri Food and Drink in Fairport and Greece.

Greater Rochester Enterprise says last year it invested two million dollars and hired 15 more people. It’s one of the companies listed in a record year at GRE.

“And that comes off a record from 2021 and what was a record year in 2020,” said Matt Hurlbutt, CEO of Greater Rochester Enterprise.

I asked Hurlbutt why a company would come here as opposed to anywhere else.

“Well, I think we’ve got ample water. We’ve got the skilled people they need,” he said.

Water is huge for technology and food. The CEO of Micron said one of the reasons he’s building a new semiconductor plant near Lake Ontario is access to water.

In Henrietta, Plug’s technology splits water to create hydrogen fuel that powers forklifts for Amazon, Walmart, Home Depot and Wegmans. Access to water is a top recruiting tool.

“We have a company in town right now,” Hurlbutt said. “And we’ve got another significant visit coming in the week following. So we are very busy and as you know from past conversations we’re bullish on this community.”

In 2022, GRE says 40 companies either expanded or relocated to the greater Rochester area.