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Iowa beef company secures $150M investment for packing facility

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After the Expanding Meat Processing Act of 2022 bill was introduced, announcements of local and regional packers began popping up. Now, an Iowa beef processor, Cattlemen’s Heritage Beef Company, has announced that Karis Capital of Naples, Florida, an equity real estate company, is investing $150 million in the packer’s planned facility in Mills County. The investment will allow Cattlemen’s Heritage to advance with the groundbreaking for the plant later this year.

“This $150 million strategic investment by Karis represents a critical milestone in the Cattlemen’s Heritage plant,” said Chad Tentinger, principal developer for the project. “With this investment secure, we can break ground later this year. We will also be able to finalize bank financing and government incentives for a project that will provide high-quality, sustainable beef for consumers and significant economic benefits for the state of Iowa and for cattle producers.”

According to Jake Finley, the founder and CEO of Karis, the Cattlemen’s Heritage project represents a unique investment opportunity that combines our access to capital and development expertise with an industry in need of modernization.

“We see extraordinary consumer demand for low-carbon, high-quality beef that’s produced sustainably, and the Cattlemen’s Heritage project does just that,” Finley said. “It will have the latest in technology with a focus on sustainability and the highest standards for plant employees and animal welfare. That’s exactly what investors and consumers are looking for.”

»Related: USDA reports lower cattle numbers in 2022


Economic Gain for Iowa and for Cattle Producers

In addition, the Cattlemen’s Heritage plant will represent an economic gain of $8 billion for the state of Iowa through construction and plant operations until 2028, according to analysis by Ernie Goss, the Jack A. MacAllister Chair in Regional Economics at Creighton University. Currently, Iowa farmers are transporting approximately one million head of cattle out of state each year, causing the state to miss significant opportunities for jobs, income, economic activity and tax revenues.

“Iowa pays a heavy price due to its insufficient number of beef-processing facilities. Those costs are borne by virtually everyone in the state of Iowa, directly or indirectly, but farmers and rural communities pay a heavy toll,” Goss said. “The addition of the planned Cattlemen’s Heritage facility in southwest Iowa means 400,000 head of cattle will remain in Iowa for harvesting and processing, generating an economic gain between now and 2028 of $8 billion.”

The Cattlemen’s Heritage project will also benefit cattle producers in Iowa and surrounding states by helping them capture more for the beef retail dollar through the company’s shackle space program, which closes in June.

»Related: Survey: Consumers’ interest in buying local beef grows


Additional Investments and Partnerships

According to Tentinger, the Karis Capital investment paves the way for additional funding and partnerships. “Given the public interest and benefits associated with the project, we continue to work with federal, state and local government officials who have previously expressed support,” Tentinger said. “We also continue to explore retail and other partnerships. Look for more news on those developments in the weeks to come.”

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