The expansion of the Sioux-Preme Packing Co. pork plant in Sioux County, Iowa, owned by Perdue Farms, is progressing, a company official said.

Perdue in August 2018 announced its intent to invest $29 million in a 50,000 square-foot, two story expansion. The initial plans were to have the expanded area open for operation in November 2019, and to hire an additional 50 people.

Gary Malenke, senior vice president of Perdue Pork Operations, told KIWA Radio the new jobs will include production workers, quality control workers, supervisors and maintenance staff. Hiring for some of the more technical positions will begin in the next two months, he said.

The company is optimistic that it can still open the new addition in November, but Malenke added it may not happen quite that soon because of the cool, wet weather, the company has used up its extra construction days.

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The addition to the plant will not mean the company will increase its capacity, but rather, Malenke said it will give Perdue “the ability to further value-add some of our products and really support some of our growing niche customers.”

The pork plant project is being awarded direct financial assistance and tax benefits from the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) through the High Quality Jobs (HQJ) program. Of the 50 jobs being created, ten of them are incented at a qualifying wage of $20.41 per hour, IEDA stated in a press release issued in 2018.

Perdue Farms, which is also the fourth-largest broiler company and seventh-largest turkey company in the United States, acquired the Sioux-Preme Packing Co. in 2015 as part of its acquisition of Natural Food Holdings. Also included in that acquisition were the Niman Ranch and Prairie Grove Brands.

The Sioux-Preme plant produces premium pork products for the Niman Ranch, Coleman Natural and Sioux Preme brands