GUN PLAIN TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Construction of a large addition to the JBS USA slaughterhouse and meatpacking facility in Gun Plain Township, Mich. is ahead of schedule due to mild weather in the area, according to the Kalamazoo Gazette. To date, the foundation is in and the walls are about to be set on about a $22 million, 81,000-square-foot facility in an area adjacent to the current plant to add freezer capacity.

JBS USA hopes to complete construction at the site in the spring of 2011.

Once the new freezer facility is completed, approximately 30,000 to 40,000 sq. ft. of space would be vacated at the current plant. In a separate $23 million project, that vacated space would be re-tooled and upgraded after the freezer capacity project is completed to add space for increased cattle slaughter and meat processing.

Once completed, 2,300 head of cattle per day could be slaughtered, up from the current 1,900 head per day. Between 70 and 80 new jobs are expected to be added.