COLD SPRING – Pilgrim's announced Friday it is making a $75 million expansion to its poultry production facility in Cold Spring.

Construction on the 50,000 sq. ft. expansion is slated to wrap up in early 2021. Once finished, Pilgrim’s intends to hire around 130 new employees to fill mainly entry-level general production jobs, says Pilgrim’s spokesperson Nikki Richardson.

In August, the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation met with representatives from Pilgrim’s and Xcel Energy along with state, city and local officials to discuss local infrastructure and other needs. Earlier this week, a 10-year tax abatement was approved by Stearns County, the City of Cold Spring and the Cold Spring School District.

“This was a major opportunity that needed quick actions by many organizations, all of which were committed to bringing this project to fruition,” said GSDC President Patti Gartland. “Pilgrim’s has long been a great member of this community and we’re pleased that up to 130 excellent, new jobs will be created for area residents.”

In addition to more chicken processing and production space, the expansion includes a new cafeteria, more break room, lunchroom and bathroom space, and increased locker room capacity.

“(The expansion) will help ensure our Cold Spring facility can grow its capacity to provide premium chicken products for people across the country,” said Wesley Smith, Pilgrim’s Cold Spring complex manager. “This news strengthens our ongoing commitment to this region, to our grower partners and of course to our team members.”

Pilgrim’s Cold Spring plant currently employs around 1,200 workers.

Fall Leaves at Saint Cloud State University

More From AM 1240 WJON