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Cattlemen’s Heritage Beef Plant Project Obtains $25 Million USDA Grant

June 29, 2023
Proposed beef-processing plant in southwest Iowa gets a significant boost from USDA’s Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program.

The USDA announced it would award $25 million to the construction of the Cattlemen’s Heritage Beef Co. processing plant in Mills County, Iowa — a project expected to cost $450 million and give ranchers in the region an additional outlet for their herds.

Cattlemen’s Heritage will receive the grant through the Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program — one of five MPPEP grants announced today. In the announcement, USDA said, “This Rural Development investment will be used to help offset the costs associated with commissioning the new beef processing plant. Cattlemen's Heritage Beef Company LLC is a startup enterprise. Funds will be used for equipment for the new 500,000 square foot facility in Mills County, Iowa, southeast of the Omaha/Council Bluffs area. When the facility reaches capacity it is projected to process 1,500 head of cattle per day, increasing access to U.S. meat products.”

MPPEP, which is funded by the American Rescue Plan Act, gives grants to independent processors to expand capacity, in order to encourage competition and sustainable growth, and to help improve supply chain resiliency. To date in fiscal year 2023, USDA has awarded $171 million to 31 MPPEP projects that have created nearly 3,000 jobs in rural communities.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the Cattlemen’s Heritage grant in Des Moines, Iowa. The Cattlemen’s Heritage plant is expected to compete on a large scale for Iowa-Nebraska cattle, with 500,000 square feet of floorspace over 130 acres.

The government grant moves the project closer to reality. According to local reports, Cattlemen’s Heritage Beef Co. already had secured $150 million in funding in January for the project, from Karis Capital, an industrial development company out of Naples, Fla.

About the Author

Andy Hanacek | Senior Editor

Andy Hanacek has covered meat, poultry, bakery and snack foods as a B2B editor for nearly 20 years, and has toured hundreds of processing plants and food companies, sharing stories of innovation and technological advancement throughout the food supply chain. In 2018, he won a Folio:Eddie Award for his unique "From the Editor's Desk" video blogs, and he has brought home additional awards from Folio and ASBPE over the years. In addition, Hanacek led the Meat Industry Hall of Fame for several years and was vice president of communications for We R Food Safety, a food safety software and consulting company.

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