Animal protein processor JBS USA has unveiled plans to expand its Plumrose USA prepared foods business in Ottumwa, Iowa, to enhance bacon and slicing capacities.

The move will allow the company to meet the increasing demand from foodservice and retail customers for its bacon products.

As part of the expansion, the company will invest $20m for additional bacon processing and slicing capacities, bacon equipment upgrades and slicing equipment.

Plumrose USA president Tom Lopez said: “Today’s announcement demonstrates our continued commitment to the Ottumwa community and reinforces our strategy to grow our business through key customer partnerships

“Today’s announcement demonstrates our continued commitment to the Ottumwa community and reinforces our strategy to grow our business.”

“This significant investment will create more opportunities for local producers, strengthen our leading portfolio of high quality, value-added pork products and support the growth aspirations of key customers.”

The company estimates that the facility upgrade will not only improve operational efficiencies but also enhance product quality.

Upgrade works are expected to be completed by September, creating 25 jobs

Built in 1976, the Ottumwa facility has the capacity to produce more than 1 billion pounds of fresh pork and bacon products per year. It has a workforce of more than 2,000 team members.

In March 2017, JBS USA entered a definitive share purchase agreement with Danish Crown to acquire the latter’s bacon, ham and deli meat business, Plumrose USA, for $230m.

JBS USA represents the North American arm of JBS SA, an animal protein processor with over 240,000 team members worldwide, more than 300 production units and export customers in more than 150 countries.