Iowa Quality Beef Supply Cooperative this week announced another opening date for the meatpacking plant in Tama. The producer-owner coop was formed to buy, renovate and operate the plant closed in 1999, but missed several announced deadlines and hadn’t responded in weeks to requests about how the rebuilding was going. Carl Keuhne is president of American Foods Group, a Wisconsin partner that will manage the plant. He’s been asked when the plant will open, replied that it’ll be open when they’re ready and now says the time’s come to announce that the opening will be July 21. Tama Mayor Richard Gibson said local officials have been anxiously awaiting the announcement for some time. Operators of the plant say it will create more than 600 jobs and Mayor Gibson says that’s the kind of development the area needs. Interviews began in February and managers say they gathered just about a thousand applications but haven’t hired any workers yet. Managers say so much has been done to renovate the plant, it’s like new and the opening date announced this week will be the 21st of July.
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