The Decatur City Council has removed a roadblock for a planned $25 million slaughterhouse that will be located inside a former ice cream manufacturing plant in the Adams County city and create about 200 jobs. Our partners at WPTA-TV report the council unanimously voted to amend a city ordinance that bans slaughterhouses within city limits.
The vote came after five months of debate with many residents opposing the project, citing concerns about noise and odor coming from the facility.
Ohio-based I-O Properties LLC, which is developing the project, tried to assure residents that there are ways to keep the cause of those concerns under control.
Decatur Mayor Dan Rickord told WPTA he understands the concerns of residents but believes the project will help expand the city’s economy. He says the developers did a good job of explaining the benefits of the project.
“I think a lot of it was education and I think a lot was just that the people who were for it weren’t out at the meetings, and when I think they realized that if they want to see our city grew, then they realized they need to show up at the meetings,” Rickord said.
The building was previously operated by Kansas City-based Dairy Farmers of America Inc. and produced a variety of ice creams under the Mayfield Dairy, Dean’s Country Fresh, and Friendly’s brands. The plant closed in November 2021.
A spokesperson for I-O Properties tells Inside INdiana Business work on reconfiguring the facility will begin this fall, with production expected to begin next fall.
The facility is slated to employ 100 workers starting out, with another 100 to be added in a second phase.