Construction of a 90,000-square-foot sausage plant in Sampson County that is expected to create 177 new jobs was announced Thursday.
The $44.8 million plant is the product of a 50-50 joint venture between Virginia-based Smithfield Foods, the world’s largest pork producer, and Kansas City Sausage, which makes private-label sausage and is headquartered in Missouri. The joint venture is also called Kansas City Sausage.
The sausage plant will be built at the site of the former Martins Abbatoir & Wholesale Meats in northwest Sampson County. Demolition of the existing plant is expected to begin immediately; construction of the new plant is targeted for completion in June 2016.
The plant will have the capacity to produce 50 million pounds of pork sausage annually and will be a soup-to-nuts operation or, as the companies put it, will extend “from live animal harvest through finished product shipping.”
The joint venture was created in 2013. For Smithfield Foods, the venture is a piece of its strategy to expand into breakfast and dinner sausages.