New Beef Processor Planned in Missouri

Missouri Beef Plant Expected to Create 1,300 Jobs; Process 2,400 Head Daily

Todd Neeley
By  Todd Neeley , DTN Staff Reporter
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American Foods Group announced plans to build a new beef-processing plant in Missouri. (DTN file photo by Vicki Myers)

LINCOLN, Neb. (DTN) -- Eastern Missouri will be home to a new 2,400-head-per-day beef-processing plant by 2024, as American Foods Group on Tuesday announced plans to build in Warren County.

Once fully operational, the plant is expected to create about 1,300 jobs and generate about $1 billion in economic activity in the region, according to the Greater Warren County Economic Development Council.

American Foods Group owns and operates eight plants in Nebraska, Wisconsin, Illinois, South Dakota, Ohio, Minnesota and Washington.

Warren County and the state of Missouri will be evaluating "potential partnership strategies" to help facilitate the location of the facility, according to a news release from the Greater Warren County Economic Development Council and the Warren County Commission. That process is expected to be completed in spring 2022.

Mike Deering, executive vice president of the Missouri Cattlemen's Association, said in a statement the 70-plus year-old family-owned company has a "long history in the beef business and is very familiar" with the Missouri's livestock industry.

"This family knows the quality of cattle produced in this state by more than 50,000 farm and ranch families," he said.

"AFG has long purchased cattle in this state for their other processing plants and having a company like this in Missouri will undoubtedly help producers here and in surrounding states. The plant is expected to process both cows and fat cattle."

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson said the plant is something Missouri farmers need.

"As a third-generation farmer and cattleman myself, I know how beneficial having a company like American Foods Group in Warren County will be for Missouri's farmers and consumers," he said in a statement.

"We are excited that Missouri is the planned location and remain committed to supporting the company as this project continues to develop in our state."

Steve Etcher, business development director for the Greater Warren County Economic Development Council, said the company's investment would help the rural economy in Warren County.

"The company would potentially invest $450 million in our region, increasing our county's property tax revenue, which will provide significant funding for our school district and other tax-supported entities," he said in a statement.

"Bringing processing this close to cattle production reduces the costs and energy needed, and it is good for Missouri cattle producers and consumers."

Missouri is the No. 3 highest beef-producing state in the country behind Texas and Oklahoma. According to USDA, as of Jan. 1, 2021, Missouri had about 2.04 million head of cattle or about 6.5% of all beef cows in the country.

In June 2021, Cattlemen's Heritage Beef announced plans to build a new beef-processing plant in Mills County, Iowa. Construction on a $325 million plant in western Iowa is set to begin in spring 2022. That plant is expected to process about 1,500 head per day and employ about 750 people.

Earlier this year Sustainable Beef LLC announced plans to build a beef-processing plant in North Platte, Nebraska. Once built that plant would process about 400,000 head of cattle per year.

A report by the North American Meat Institute earlier this year cited expansion and new plants coming online that would add capacity for at least 5,200 new head, https://www.meatinstitute.org/…. That report did not take into account the planned plant construction in Iowa or Missouri.

Read more on DTN:

"New Beef Processing Plant Announced in Iowa,"

https://www.dtnpf.com/…

Todd Neeley can be reached at todd.neeley@dtn.com

Follow him on Twitter @DTNeeley

Todd Neeley