TOPEKA, KAS. — Mars Chocolate North America, a division of Mars Inc., plans to build a new manufacturing in Topeka. The company said the facility will be the first new “chocolate site built in the U.S. in 35 years,” and it will make an investment of $250 million during the first phase of the project.

Phase one is scheduled to be completed in 2013, at which time the facility will begin processing M&M’s and Snickers branded products. Subsequent phases of the project will expand the capacity of the facility and more Mars product lines will be added.

“We are excited to announce our plan to construct this new manufacturing site in Topeka,” said Mike Wittman, vice-president of supply chain for Mars Chocolate North America. “The site will be a reflection of our commitment to manufacture our products in the markets where we sell them.”