Thursday, June 1, 2006
By SUE WATSON
Cargill Animal Nutrition is set to break ground in Byhalia for the construction of a $17.5 million facility to manufacture feed for a variety of species.
Groundbreaking ceremonies are Tuesday, June 6, at 2 p.m. at the construction site at 7100 Highway 178 West in Byhalia. The company is currently located in Memphis.
Byhalia Mayor Scooter Dempsey said the community is glad to have Cargill coming to the town.
“It’s a big deal for us for a company like Cargill to come here,” he said. “They are such a community-minded company - the kind of companies we want to attract to Byhalia.”
In the last 30 days, even before construction has begun, Dempsey said some of the local employees of Cargill in Memphis are intermingling with the community through church attendance and opening of personal bank accounts - actions that show they want to become part of the community.
Construction of the facility will add more job opportunities for local people, too, Dempsey said.
“They are requesting to use as many locals as possible in construction, and they are not even here yet, but they are already here,” Dempsey said. “It is good to have companies who are not so greedy, and for them to want to be a participant in the community is even better.”
Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour is slated to attend the ceremony along with Cargill VIPs Christopher Langholz, vice-president of the Animal Nutrition Division, Tom Taylor, general manager with the Kansas City District of the Animal Nutrition Division, and Matt Kanz, on-site supervisor for construction. A full line of bagged and bulk products will be produced in the Byhalia area.
Kanz said the local community will benefit with the location of Cargill in Marshall County through the goods and services that will be purchased to help run the operations. Approximately 30 employees will work at the facility.
Some of the technologies at this facility will be a robotic stacking system for all bagged products. This will reduce the manual handling of bags, which helps preserve the health and safety of Cargill teammates.
Bill Renick, with Marshall County Industrial Development Authority, noted that counties bordering the Tennessee/Mississippi line like DeSoto County and Marshall County are seeing tremendous growth potential for big companies. He said this is due to incentives like the freeport warehouse law and manufacturing exemptions Mississippi legislators put in place some years ago to attract new industries and to expand existing ones.
“The law made it more advantageous for companies to locate those distribution and warehouse facilities in Mississippi rather than Tennessee,” Renick said.
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