Under the agreement, the plant will continue to provide Hormel with pork. The plant produces Spam, sausage and other products.
South Dakota Pork Producers Council executive director Glenn Muller says it’s an opportunity for producers.
“It changes the infrastructure of the industry,” Muller says. “It allows some of our producers to participate in the processing and harvesting of the animals, not only production but also expand their opportunities to capture some that revenue.”
Muller says having producers own processing plants is a developing trend. He notes, the workforce at the Fremont facility will remain in place after it completes the sale to WholeStone Farms. The only thing really changing is the ownership, he says.
“Our consumers are concerned about where their products come from and this eliminates one more line in their concerns,” Muller says. “They can know now that the product is going directly from the farm to the factory and it has that identity with that product.”
The sale is expected to be complete in December.
WholeStone was started in 2017 and is comprised of more than 220 pork producers from South Dakota and Minnesota who raise about 12-million hogs a year.
WholeStone is affiliated with Pipestone System, based in Pipestone, Minnesota.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton