Swift (Non)Expansion Update

Chandler Keys, a spokesperson for JBS USA/Swift, has contacted LEO to deflate rumors that his company has plans to augment slaughtering facilities in the Butchertown neighborhood.

“We have no plans for expanding our Louisville plant,” he said in a phone interview, adding that the planned Marshalltown, IA, distribution center isn’t reflective of a broader effort to bolster Swift’s national pork production capabilities. “Besides, there’s no room for us to expand” in Butchertown. He also went on to say that the latest point of contention with the neighborhood — the illegal installation of a new “hog chute” — was the result of a contractor failing to obtain the correct building permits, which caused issues with Louisville’s BOZA.

Although this doesn’t expunge the fact that they allowed this to happen beyond the purview of BOZA, safety inspectors and the Butchertown Neighborhood Association, Keys’ statement — if it holds true — could prove prophetic. Swift’s commitment to build 150,000 square feet of new facility outside of Butchertown illustrates that maybe the company is seeking greener pastures beyond Louisville. Or perhaps Iowans don’t bitch as effectively.

2 Comments

  1. sarah Kelley
    Posted October 8, 2009 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    So the company is building a new 150-square-foot facility, yet claims it does not intend to slaughter more pigs? The logical conclusion would be that the company is indeed planning to scale back production at its exiting facility. That’s a big if, but perhaps outspoken Butchertown residents are finally getting to them …

  2. Billy Goat Struuuuut
    Posted October 8, 2009 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Did Chandler tell you about the expansion they are trying to do in Iowa that would build over the small community’s little league baseball diamonds???

    Did he say anything about how they are appealing BOZA’s decision that makes them spend $137k in Louisville to mitigate the nuisance it causes??

    Bet he didn’t!! The people who run this company are lower than the dirt between the swine’s hooves!

    Buy local, know your food source.