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Tyson Fresh Meats to build food production plant in Utah

New case-ready facility will be involved in converting large cuts of beef and pork into steaks, chops, roasts and ground meat for retail trays.

The Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) has announced that Tyson Fresh Meats, a subsidiary of Tyson Foods Inc., will invest almost $300 million to build a food production plant in Utah that will initially provide 800 jobs and is expected to expand to 1,200 positions within three years after opening. It will also add an estimated $27 million in new state tax revenue over the next 10 years.

“We are pleased that Tyson Foods, a Fortune 100 company, has selected Utah to build its newest facility,” GOED executive director Val Hale said. “This well-known company has a long history and great reputation. It will allow them to have better distribution and access to the western states.”

The new facility will be a case-ready plant. It will be involved in converting large cuts of beef and pork into steaks, chops, roasts and ground meat that are placed in retail trays, weighed and labeled and then shipped to retailers to be sold through the grocery meat case.

Tyson Fresh Meats is the beef and pork unit of Tyson Foods, one of the nation’s leading food companies. The business currently operates case-ready plants in Iowa, Tennessee and Texas and hopes to open the Utah facility as soon as 2021.

“We’re excited about building a new food plant in Utah and appreciate the state’s support and the exceptional people we’ve met,” said Nate Hodne, senior vice president and general manager of case-ready meats for Tyson Fresh Meats. “We believe Utah is a great location because of the availability of labor and property and the access to highways and rail. Once built, the new facility will help us meet growing demand for case-ready meat in the western U.S.”

Company representatives have assessed several potential plant sites in the Salt Lake City, Utah, area and are currently collaborating with local officials at one of the locations to confirm that all needed infrastructure and other support will be available. Once remaining questions are answered, Tyson said more information will be shared.

State tax incentives for the project are based on expectations for 500 high-paying jobs. The total wages in aggregate for each position used to determine incentives must exceed 110% of the average county wage. Projected new state wages over the life of the agreement may be up to $202,633,508. Projected new state tax revenues, as a result of corporate, payroll and sales tax, are estimated to be $27,791,620. In addition, this project will also increase local property taxes and provide other benefits to state and local entities.

“Tyson Fresh Meats’ expansion demonstrates that Utah is more than a hotbed for software and IT companies. This manufacturing plant will diversify the local economy and provide opportunities for residents to work close to home,” said Theresa Foxley, president and chief executive officer of the Economic Development Corp. of Utah.

Tyson Fresh Meats may earn up to 20% of the new state taxes it will pay over the 10-year life of the agreement in the form of a post-performance Economic Development Finance (EDIF) tax credit rebate. As part of the contract with Tyson, the GOED board of directors has approved a post-performance EDIF tax credit not to exceed $5,258,324 and a post-performance Industrial Assistance Fund economic opportunity for the last-mile infrastructure of $300,000, representing 20% of the estimated $27,791,620 of new state revenue that may be earned over 10 years. Each year Tyson meets the criteria in its contract with the state, the company will earn a portion of the total tax credit rebate.

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