SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Plans for the Wholestone pork plant in Sioux Falls will move ahead after a campaign to stop the company from building in Sioux Falls failed. The company says it will create thousands of jobs and give local hog farmers another option.
The President of the Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce calls last night’s rejection of a ban on slaughterhouses in Sioux Falls a victory for agriculture and free enterprise.
Wholestone Farms purchased 175 acres in Sioux Falls near I-229 and Benson Road.
They plan to build a $500 million pork processing plant on this site.
“I’ve been able to meet a lot more pig farmers along the way during this campaign and not just in South Dakota but in surrounding states and the option they have to increase their market and to increase their production and the list goes on between the truckers and all the peripheral services that go along with a project like this,” Jeff Griffen, President of the Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce said.
The campaign against the plant centered on the smell. “Stop the stink” became a tagline.
Griffin toured the company’s plant in Freemont, Nebraska.
“I went to the plant and there is no smell. And we have no concerns about that. With our ag influence and advisors, we have at the Chamber explaining the technology of what they are going to be using here we have absolutely no fear that a modern pork processing plant is going to have smell. People compare it in their mind to old plant it’s just a complete apples-to-oranges comparison,” said Griffen.
The company said it would initially hire a thousand workers, then add more as they bring on additional shifts.
Construction of the plant is scheduled to be completed by 2025.
Griffen understands the the workforce challenges, but says Wholestone has a plan to recruit workers and they trust in that.