The Hoosier state continues to grow its food processing sector. John Morrell Food Group, the oldest continuously-operating meat manufacturer in the country, announced plans today to locate a distribution center in Indiana, creating up to 260 new jobs by the end of 2016. “John Morrell’s newest hub for logistics is coming to the Crossroads of America,” said Governor Mike Pence. “Indiana’s central U.S. location and expansive logistics network, with thousands of railway miles and more pass-through interstates than any other state in the nation, makes Indiana the ideal base for companies like John Morrell that serve customers across the country.”
The company will invest $43.5 million to build and equip a meat products distribution center, scheduled to begin operations by the end of this year. John Morrell, an independent operating company of Smithfield Foods, has 17 manufacturing facility across the country, including a plant in Peru, Ind.
“We’re looking forward to beginning operations in our state-of-the-art facility in Hancock County, Indiana later this year and becoming active in that community,” said Scott Saunders, chief financial officer of John Morrell. “Both John Morrell and our parent company, Smithfield Foods, are strong believers in being good neighbors and giving back to the communities where we live, work and raise our families.”
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) offered John Morrell & Company up to $1,500,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company’s job creation plans. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. The IEDC will also provide the community with up to $250,000 in infrastructure assistance from the state’s Industrial Development Grant Fund. Hancock County approved additional tax abatement at the request of the Hancock Economic Development Council.
“We are thrilled that John Morrell chose the Hancock County, Indiana site for their refrigerated facility in the Access 70 Business Park,” said Bill Bolander, president of the Hancock County Council. “John Morrell is a 180 year old company specializing in meats, including pork, ham and bacon products. This project became a reality because of the efforts of the board and team of the Hancock Economic Development Council.”