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Tyson Foods considering $5M expansion in Monroe

10 December 2015

By Adam Bell, The Charlotte Observer

Tyson Foods is considering a $5 million expansion for its Monroe chicken processing plant that would add about 50 jobs.

The plant off U.S. 74 already is one of the top five employers in Union County, with more than 1,500 workers.

 

To help land the project, Union County commissioners this week approved incentives worth up to $115,000, and Monroe City Council authorized another $110,000 in incentives. No state incentives will be involved.

Tyson is requiring incentives as part of its decision on where to locate the expansion, Ron Mahle, assistant director of Monroe-Union County Economic Development, told commissioners this week.

The Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson has been in Monroe since 1989.

In an interview, Mahle said the county hopes to learn Tyson’s decision by the end of the month. The company is also considering doing the expansion in facilities in the Midwest.

“We’re very optimistic,” Mahle said. “Their manufacturing facility here has performed very well, and that goes a long way with the decision makers in Arkansas.”

Citing competitive reasons, Tyson spokesman Worth Sparkman declined to say how many other sites the company is considering or what states they are in.

Tyson is considering spending the money on new equipment to help increase efficiency and pounds of chicken packed per shift for its tray pack distribution, Mahle said. Those packs contain fresh boneless chicken packed on trays wrapped in cellophane.

Union County also approved another incentives deal this week.

That plan offers up to $46,000 to BrandRPM, an Indian Trail company that provides embroidery and screen prints for corporate and athletic apparel. BrandRPM calls itself one of the leading distributors of Under Armour and Adidas apparel in the country.

BrandRPM is considering a $2.3 million investment in a new building, new equipment and machinery at another site in Indian Trail or in South Carolina. If the company chooses Indian Trail, it would move its existing facility to the new building.

A decision could come by the end of March.

The project has the potential to add 38 jobs, economic development officials said. BrandRPM has 28 workers at its Indian Trail headquarters and has been in the town since 2008.

The company, which supplied 16,000 polo shirts to volunteers at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte in 2012, generated $8.5 million in revenue last year.

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