Tyson Foods plans $300 million meat packaging plant — and 800 new jobs — for Utah

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Tyson Fresh Meats, a subsidiary of Tyson Foods Inc., will invest nearly $300 million to develop a food production plant in Utah County that will initially provide 800 new jobs and is expected to expand to 1,200 positions within three years, the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development announced Thursday.

The project is forecast to add an estimated $27 million in new state tax revenue over the next 10 years.

The economic development office’s board of directors approved a post-performance tax credit not to exceed $5.26 million over a 10-year-period and $300,00 from the Industrial Assistance Fund for last-mile infrastructure.

The proposed facility will be a 400,000-square-foot case-ready plant, which will take large cuts of beef and pork and convert them into steaks, chops, roasts and ground meat to be packaged, weighed and labeled on retail trays that are shipped and sold in grocery stores, explained Tyson Fresh Meats senior vice president Nate Hodne.

“We believe Utah is a great location because of the availability of labor and property and the access to highways and rail,” he said. “Once built, the new facility will help us meet the growing demand for case-ready meat in the western U.S. From this location, we can get to every place in the West (by truck).”

The exect site of the facility has yet to be determined.

He also mentioned the educated population base along the Wasatch Front that would offer qualified workers for the facility, particularly if it is expanded in the coming years.

“We think (Utah) would be a good place for employees,” Hodne said.

The Tyson Fresh Meats business unit currently has three case-ready plants, operating in Sherman, Texas, Council Bluffs, Iowa, and Goodlettsville, Tennessee, and hopes to open the Utah facility by 2021, he said.

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