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Sunday, May 26, 2024

Peanut processor to invest $17 million in Elizabethtown facility 

A peanut shelling company will invest $17 million and hire 44 employees in the town of Elizabethtown in Bladen County to upgrade and renovate its facilities and improve its peanut butter production.

Severn Peanut, a division of Meherrin Agricultural and Chemical, has been in business for more than 75 years. Based in the Northampton County town of Severn, with a population of less than 200 people, the peanut company shells and processes peanuts for growers and retailers.

“Severn Peanut Company in Elizabethtown continues to create good jobs which spotlights our world class farmers and diverse workforce, which help make North Carolina the best state to do business,” Gov. Roy Cooper said in a statement released by his office. “We know agriculture is the heart and soul of our economy.”

 

The multi-generation, family-owned parent company is vertically integrated with shelling, roasting, and packaging services for its North Carolina-grown peanuts. Severn will upgrade equipment and renovate the Elizabethtown operation to produce bulk peanut butter.

Hampton Farms is a part of Severn Peanut Co., which announced plans Tuesday, April 4, 2023, to invest $17 million and hire 44 workers in Elizabethtown.

“We are grateful for the continued support we have received from local and state officials who have been integral in moving the project forward,” said Dallas Barnes, president and CEO of Meherrin. “We are excited about the opportunities this project will create for our customers as well as current and future team members, here in the state we call home.”

Although salaries for operators, technicians, supervisors, and managers will vary by position, the overall average annual wage is $41,984, which exceeds Bladen County’s overall average annual wage of $41,913. These new jobs will have a potential annual payroll impact of more than $1.8 million for the community.

North Carolina ranks fifth in the nation for peanut production, say N.C. Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders.

A performance-based grant of $150,000 from the One North Carolina Fund to Peanut Processors of Elizabethtown, LLC, a subsidiary of Severn Peanut, will help with the company’s expansion in North Carolina. All One NC grants require matching participation from local governments and any award is contingent upon that condition being met.

Editor’s note: Earlier report did not list Meherrin Agricultural and Chemical as a North Carolina-based company.

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