KANSAS CITY, MO. – It’s not often that a food manufacturing company announces plans to build a $500 million facility, but that’s what Fremont, Neb.-based Wholestone Farms did in June.
The producer-owned pork processor is expanding operations into Sioux Falls, SD, on land located near Interstate 229 and within an industrial park. The technology-rich pork slaughtering and processing facility will initially employ more than 1,100 people.
Wholestone Farms was established in 2018 to create and capture value in the pork supply chain for its 200 members who are independent family farmers raising livestock and crops in the upper Midwest. The producer-owners collectively farm nearly 400,000 acres of cropland and raise 12 million pigs annually.
Wholestone currently operates a pork processing facility in Fremont. Scott Webb, chief executive officer of Wholestone, said that facility currently is a one-shift operation processing 3 million hogs a year. The plan is to double-shift the planned Fremont facility and raise production to about 6 million head – but that leaves a gap the company is looking to fill with processing capacity in Sioux Falls.
In this week’s MEAT+POULTRY podcast, Webb shared details about the proposed facility and how it symbolizes the producer-owners’ commitment to bringing the consumer closer to the farmer.