Tyson Foods plans to upgrade its pork slaughter operation in the Columbus Junction, Iowa, packing plant. The meat giant has received $540,000 in grant money from the Iowa Economic Development Authority to help fund the upgrade.
The renovation project will cost Tyson Foods roughly $15 million that includes 10 new jobs added. Much of the work will include replacing the stunning procedures with electrical prods now used by the plant in slaughter to a carbon dioxide gas system, more commonly used in the pork packing industry.
This investment comes as Tyson Foods CEO Donnie King said the company struggles to balance inflationary raw material and transportation costs and still remain profitable. In response, Tyson raised pork prices by an average 39.3% in the last quarter, taking beef prices 11.6% higher and chicken prices increased by 15.6%.
“We’ve seen unprecedented and accelerating inflation, and we’re trying to catch up with that,” King said in the recent earnings call.
Shares of Tyson Foods (NYSE: TSN) closed Monday at $79.53, down 41 cents. For the past 52 weeks shares have traded between $55.82 and $82.45.