WALNUT RIDGE, ARK.- Williams Baptist University (WBU) recently announced construction work had started on a 4,200-square-foot meat processing facility projected to be operational by the end of 2022.

According to information from the private university, the plant will be certified by the US Department of Agriculture and help address the shortage of meat processors in Arkansas. The facility will also provide jobs to students in WBU’s Williams Works initiative, which allows students to work at the facility as part of a program that allows them to receive a debt-free degree.

“We are excited for this opportunity to grow our Williams Works initiative and fill a vital need in the state of Arkansas,” said Stan Norman president of WBU. “The WBU students who will work in this facility will gain valuable experience that they can take with them into other aspects of their lives as they progress through their time at WBU and into their adult lives.”

The facility is expected to harvest 20-25 animals per week when in full operation. 

A certification program will be available to any interested in working at the plant, including those not enrolled at WBU.