The grand opening of the largest soybean plant in the world took place in the Missouri Bootheel last Friday with Missouri's governor and other agriculture industry leaders in attendance.
DuPont and Pioneer Hi-Bred held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Sept. 30 for the $60-million parent and commercial soybean seed production plant located in New Madrid County.
"Pioneer is investing in Missouri and in our state's workforce, and I'm glad the state of Missouri could be a partner in this important project for the region's economy," said Missouri Governor Jay Nixon. "We're committed to creating good jobs for this region and sending a clear signal to the world that when it comes to the bioscience sector, Missouri means business."
Construction on the new plant began in May 2010. It is located on 129 acres of land in New Madrid County. The plant will begin operations in October during soybean harvest. Currently, the plant employs more than 65 people, with the option to hire more during peak operational needs.
This is the first Pioneer seed production facility in Missouri and will primarily serve soybean growers in more southern geographies in the United States. Pioneer also has a research facility in Miami, Mo., as well, selling corn, soybean, sorghum and wheat seed in the state.
"Agriculture is a growing industry to be in right now, and we're pleased that Pioneer is bringing jobs to the area," said Alejandro Munoz, vice president, Pioneer Americas & Global Production. "This new facility is vital as we continue to invest in resources that deliver value to our growers and will strengthen our ability to meet the increasing product needs of our growers."
The southeast Missouri location is essential to grow business, provide soybean products and meet product demand, according to Munoz.
It is one of many expansions Pioneer is taking to ensure it meets rising demand for its products to help farmers meet the strong global demand for grain. Pioneer is expanding both its production and research locations in North America. Increasing food production is a priority initiative for DuPont. The company invests about 60% of its $1.7 billion annual research and development budget to furthering this goal.