BASTROP, La. – Hazlehurst, Miss.-based chicken processor DG Foods Ltd. plans to open a plant in Bastrop, La., that will create 317 jobs, company and economic development officials announced. DG Foods Ltd. said it will spend $9.7 million for the plant, the second recent chicken processing project to receive state economic incentives to operate in northeastern Louisiana, according to The Associated Press.

After a Pilgrim's Pride Corp. plant closed in Farmerville in 2009, the state arranged a purchase with California-based Foster Farms and put up half of the $72.2 million price. Foster Farms now employs about 1,100 people.

DG Foods plans to renovate an 88,000-sq.-ft. building with full operations beginning in July 2011. The company is receiving a $700,000 state loan for the building and a forgivable $2.85 million loan for building improvements and is eligible for state industrial tax exemptions and work force training programs. State officials said both loans are based on the company following through on its plan and reaching hiring goals. The city of Bastrop has committed to infrastructure improvements and sewer upgrades.

Bastrop is a strategic location that will allow it to serve customers in Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana, company CEO Duffy McKenzie said.

DG Foods announced a $2.78 million expansion of its plant south of Jackson, Miss., earlier this year. Founded in 2004 by three veteran poultry executives, the company processes about 250 million tons of poultry annually.