BENTONVILLE, ARK. – Walmart Inc. and Sustainable Beef LLC announced on Aug. 31 that the world’s largest retailer would take a minority stake in the company as it plans to start on a new $325 million beef processing facility in 2022.
Construction on the plant in North Platte, Neb. is expected to break ground next month, opening in late 2024. The companies said 800 new jobs would be created at the facility. Sustainable Beef expects to process 1,500 head per day and up 100,000 per year when fully operational.
“We set out on a journey two years ago to create a new beef processing plant to add some capacity to the industry and provide an opportunity for producers to integrate their business of raising quality cattle with the beef processing portion of the industry and do it in a sustainable manner,” said David Briggs, chief executive officer of Sustainable Beef LLC. “During this journey we found that Sustainable Beef and Walmart aligned on continuing to improve how we care for our animals and crops and provide consumers the positive experience of enjoying quality beef.”
As part of the equity investment, Walmart will also have representation on Sustainable Beef’s board of directors.
“At Walmart, we are dedicated to providing high-quality, affordable beef to our customers, and an investment in Sustainable Beef LLC will give us even more access to these products,” said Tyler Lehr, senior vice president of merchandising for deli services, meat and seafood, Walmart US. “We know Sustainable Beef LLC has a responsible approach to beef processing, one that includes creating long-term growth for cattle ranchers and family farmers. This investment provides greater visibility into the beef supply chain and complements Walmart’s regeneration commitment to improve grazing management.”
Sustainable Beef plans to work with cattle feeders and ranchers to understand vital components of the supply chain, such as grain sourcing and grazing management. The beef processor will also commit to antibiotic use and reporting across herds in line with Walmart’s Position on Antibiotics in Animals, which asks suppliers to adopt and implement the American Veterinary Medical Association Judicious Use Principles of Antimicrobials.
Walmart did not disclose how much of an investment it made in Sustainable Beef.