Two Italian companies plan to open a one-and-a-half million dollar food processing plant in Ames. Iowa Department of Economic Development director Michael Blouin says Caremoil and Rizzolio have formed a joint venture to produce additives for food, such as cereals or pasta. “The primary ingredients will be egg whites and wheat fibers, so it’s another value-added opportunity for Iowans,” Blouin says. The venture will initially employ five people — at salaries of more than 50-thousand dollars. The state’s giving the two companies a 50-thousand dollar grant for the project, as well as some tax credits. Blouin says Iowa officials have been actively courting business executives overseas. Blouin says Iowa has a “very active” office in Europe and have been trying to convince European companies “to give Iowa a try.” Blouin says a growing number of Italian companies have started to show an interest. The two companies plan to buy an existing building in the Ames area and make conversions.