WLF Connection (4/20/17)

Michelle Elizondo · Wednesday, April 19, 2017
When brainstorming topic ideas for this month’s article I struggled, so I reached out to my family for input. My sister suggested I talk about each of the different facilities and what is unique about each.

What I decided is that it’s so easy to overlook something as simple as this when you live and breathe the business for so long. Big picture, each WLF location can essentially manufacture the same products, but there are aspects to each that make them uniquely different. Today, I’m focusing on Mount Pleasant and Tremonton.

Operations in Mount Pleasant, IA began in 2003. The building is roughly 84,000 sq. ft. and has the slicing capacity of up to 152 million pounds annually. This was the first of our locations to be built from the “ground up” and has several state-of-the-art characteristics. Most significant, is the 20 patented slicing cells.

Each cell has its own processing line, air handling system, drainage system, and encapsulated suiting. Designed for food safety purposes, raw product never enters Mount Pleasant, everything they slice is manufactured in West Liberty and transferred to the plant.

West Liberty is our only fully-integrated operation ranging from live turkey processing all the way down to finished goods in the package. Mount Pleasant has many packaging capabilities for both retail and foodservice such as label peel & reseal, carton, tray, pouch, and bulk. They also have High Pressure Pasteurization (HPP) which is a non-thermal process that maintains the flavor and nutrients of fresh food while destroying foodborne pathogens.

Simply said, it kills spoilage bacteria in food so you can buy products with little to no preservatives.

Moving out to Tremonton, this facility opened its doors in 2007. Another exciting expansion for WLF, we chose Utah so we could better service the western portion of the United States. Dubbed our “green field” campus, this operation has beautiful mountain views and is approximately 242,000 sq. ft. Annual product capacity is around 165 million pounds.

The campus has two separate buildings- one for raw product and one for ready-to-eat product with a cold storage facility sandwiched in-between. Tremonton enabled us to expand our capabilities and product portfolio from only sliced lunchmeat to chicken strips, chicken patties, and whole muscle products. Tremonton has fully automated individually quick frozen (IQF) lines along with water cook capabilities that enable us to make shredded meats.

Here, you can find the same HPP machines and patented slicing cells found in Mount Pleasant. Unique to Tremonton is use of robotics and capability to manufacture and slice 10ft logs.

Before I go, the West Liberty Foods history video was released last month. Make sure to visit our website at wlfoods.com or like our Facebook page to watch!
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