Farbest Foods, a turkey company based in southern Indiana, employs nearly 1,400 people at its turkey production buildings, processing facilities and feed mill after its recently completed expansion. Company officials recently discussed its expansion that added hundreds of jobs in Indiana at the Livestock, Forage and Grain Forum in Indianapolis.
“The expansion we’ve taken in Knox County has led to the creation of around 400 jobs for the particular area,” said Phil Seger, director of corporate human relations at Farbest. “We added a number of new grow-out farms throughout southern Indiana, Kentucky and Illinois. The biggest number is in our processing plant in Vincennes, where we added just south of 400 folks. What it’s done is provide very good opportunities for those in that area looking for good positions that are first shift with full benefits. It was something that was lacking in that area.”
Farbest contracts with 225 farm families, according to an AgriNews report. The number of contract producers grew with the recent expansion.
“It started with the consumer and the consumer demand for better, healthy protein,” said Ted Seger, president of Farbest. “Turkey just happened to fit that bill very well. What normally happens in a demand-pull situation is the most efficient producers in the industry will likely get a larger share of that demand pull. Farbest was uniquely located here in Indiana. We were able to expand because Farbest was a very efficient operation.”
The Farbest Foods management team said it looked at several locations, but Indiana proved to be the ideal place for the company to settle. Being located where feed ingredients such as corn and soybeans are grown was one benefit. The availability of a dedicated workforce and contract growers willing to put up new turkey barns in the region also contributed to the company's decision to be in Indiana.