September 27, 2016

Diamond V plans for major expansion with US$28 million investment



Diamond V plans to expand manufacturing capacity to support the increased production of natural, nutritional health products for animals.


Plans call for the current manufacturing complex in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, US, to expand through a new capital investment of US$28 million beginning in September 2016 with anticipated completion in 2018, which would coincide with the company's 75th anniversary.


"There has been a tremendous acceleration in adoption rates for our products," said Jeff Cannon, Diamond V's president and CEO. "…especially in Asia and Latin America. Sales have been growing at rates around 20% for the past five years, which has brought our South Plant, opened in 2009, close to capacity."


The planned expansion will add a second manufacturing facility of approximately 97,800 square feet (9,806 square meters) along with related manufacturing capabilities, including storage, fermentation, drying, grinding, packaging, and transportation equipment. This expansion also would provide new skilled jobs in manufacturing, research and development, marketing, accounting, and information technology.


"With this expansion project," executive vice president Dave Lusson said, "…we'll be able to continue the growth of our nutritional health products globally, including the adoption of our technology by the world's poultry, swine, beef, and dairy industries as an important pre-harvest food safety solution to reduce food-born pathogen contamination and provide solutions for evolving antibiotic stewardship."


Foodborne illness is a common and costly - yet preventable - public health problem. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that each year one in six Americans gets sick from contaminated foods or beverages and 3,000 die. Studies estimate the cost of foodborne illnesses between US$51 billion and nearly US$78 billion annually in the US alone. Consumers around the world want research-proven assurance that their food supply is safe, Diamond V said. Reducing pathogens in the gastro-intestinal tracts of animals can help reduce the risk of pathogens in food processing.


Diamond V's expansion project will be contingent upon regulatory approval and governmental approval of financial assistance. State financial assistance would be primarily in the form of property tax relief on the new facility. The Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance assisted in preparation of the state application.