SMITHFIELD, Va. – Smithfield Foods is betting on precooked barbecue and bacon as the company prepares to ramp up production of those items with expanded processing facilities.

Smithfield confirmed plans to invest $9 million to expand production capacity at its Curly's facility in Sioux City, Iowa. Once the project is completed, the existing facility will expand by 21,000 sq. ft. Construction on the plant is expected start in the spring with completion slated for the fall. The company expects to add 25 to 30 new jobs when the plant is fully operational.

"We're very excited about this new facility because it will help us meet growing customer demand for our company's high-quality, ready-to-eat and cooked meat products," said Bob Brady, vice president and general manager of the Curly's facility, which produces precooked ribs and other barbecue products.

The announcement of the Curly's expansion follows ground breaking on a $12 million bacon-slicing facility at Smithfield's Patrick Cudahy plant in Wisconsin.