The new CEO of a shuttered beef plant in Aberdeen, S.D. said that he is optimistic about the plant’s future and hopes to eventually employ nearly 600 people there, while processing up to 1,000 head of cattle per day. Doug Cooper, CEO of what is now called the New Angus plant, told the Aberdeen American News that he is working on a five-year business plan that will restore production to the plant that has been idled since 2012.

“I can tell you this — we have a world-class facility,” Cooper said. “We have people in the building now who are checking everything out, making sure things are in place mechanically and on the electrical side and in other areas. We’re not interested in being high-profile. I don’t want to be in the Wall Street Journal — I just want to establish a sustainable business.”

The plant formerly operated as Northern Beef Packers. After a series of delays during the construction process, the plant was never able to operate close to its capacity and closed down not long after opening. Its assets were acquired by the investment firm White Oak Global Advisors, which tasked Cooper with getting the plant up and running again.

Cooper said that the goal is to be in operation within the next year.

“I know there are some very nice feed yards within a 50-mile radius of Aberdeen. Brown County and Aberdeen have to be a huge part of our marketing story. We’re located perfectly here to tell a meaningful, genuine story of going from the idea to the plate. The supply is here and I’m focused on establishing an export culture.”

Source: Aberdeen American News